Improved Climate through Extension of Tram Network
The Hanseatic city of Rostock committed itself to halving CO2 emissions as early as 1991 when it joined the Climate Alliance. Almost a fifth of emissions per capita originate from transportation, thus Rostock has endeavoured to dramatically reduce CO2 emissions from this source by enthusiastically promoting all sustainable modes of transport (public transport, cycle and foot traffic). The city tram company, Rostocker Straßenbahn AG (RSAG), has been a central player in this endeavour.
Rostock affords one of the most modern and efficient tram networks in Germany. Since 1998, the RSAG has extended its lines from 22 to 35 km, with over 80% of Rostock's inhabitants now being serviced. Since 1994, two out of three trams have comprised carriages equipped with regenerative braking systems, which store energy with every application of the brakes. This reduces total energy usage and emissions. Extension of the network has led to a halving of the number of buses, thus reducing yearly CO2 outputs by 400 tons. Depending on traffic density, the RSAG deploys minibuses, so that consumption can be reduced from 37 to 14 l/100 km. The RSAG has meanwhile successfully integrated climate protection into its marketing campaigns with the slogan "Blue Fleet. Better Climate".