Investment in infrastructure can accelerate the transition to sustainable transport, or it can cement the existing system and make the switch needlessly expensive and protracted. To avoid the latter, various policy perspectives must align towards a common goal of creating a political framework for the transport transformation. Such a framework will help Germany to achieve its goal of a 40 to 42% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030 relative to 1990 levels.
One of the first steps to achieving this transformation is strengthening the rail system. Another is the recognition that the transport infrastructure of the future will consist of more than concrete and steel alone. New elements will also include charging points, stations for alternative fuels and nationwide high-speed broadband. The federal government and local municipalities must somehow find the money to finance such investment even as tax revenues fall due to increased electrification. This will only be possible if there are reforms to the current system of taxes, levies and surcharges in the transport and electricity sectors.