The search is on for the best sustainable travel initiatives in Europe as the 2013 Eurostar Ashden Award for Sustainable Travel opens for entries.
The Award, which is free to enter, recognises pioneering sustainable travel schemes from Belgium, France and the UK that are leading the way in encouraging people to adopt more sustainable forms of travel, helping improve quality of life, reducing congestion and pollution, and cutting CO2 emissions.
Entry to the Award is open until the 30th October 2012, and up to two winners will be awarded with a share of the £30,000 prize money at a prestigious ceremony in London in June 2013. In addition to prize money, winning the Award offers access to a package of benefits including a platform to promote the organisation's work and introductions to policymakers, potential funders and investors, as well as access to the prestigious Ashden Alumni network.
The winners of this year's first ever Eurostar Ashden Award for Sustainable Travel were the City of Ghent in Belgium and UK car-sharing website liftshare.com. Eurostar CEO Nicolas Petrovic presented their Awards at a prestigious ceremony at the Royal Geographical Society in London on 30 May.
Paul Teerlink, Ghent City Manager and Daniel Termont, Mayor of Ghent said: "We see this Award as confirmation of our long-term efforts to make Ghent an enjoyable cycling city. The prize money will be spent on new bicycle projects and initiatives and will help us in reaching our final goal to be carbon neutral by 2050."
Speaking at this year's Ashden Awards, Eurostar CEO Nicolas Petrovic said: "Participating in the Ashden Awards has been a great experience and it has been particularly exciting to hear from so many people who are so passionate about sustainable travel. We look forward to coming back next year."
The Eurostar Ashden Award for Sustainable Travel is part of Eurostar's Tread Lightly programme to reduce the business' impact on the environment and encourage people to switch to more sustainable modes of transport. To apply for the 2012 Award visit www.ashden.org/travel_awards.
Notes to editors:
The Ashden Awards were set up in 2001 to champion practical, local energy solutions that cut carbon, protect the environment, reduce poverty and improve people's lives. Since then they have rewarded and supported more than 140 winners across the UK and the developing world. For further information, including photos, films, and case studies on past winners, go to www.ashden.org
Eurostar is the high-speed train service linking customers to St Pancras International, Ebbsfleet International, Ashford International, Paris city breaks, Brussels, Lille, Calais, Disneyland Paris, Avignon and the French Alps via the channel tunnel.
Eurostar was established in 1994 as a partnership between three railway companies: SNCF, SNCB and LCR (London and Continental Railways). On 1 September 2010, Eurostar became a single, unified corporate entity owned by three shareholders: SNCF, SNCB and LCR.
The current Eurostar train was first introduced into service in 1994 carrying 750 passengers and operating at speeds of up to 300kph. Since then, the fleet of 28 trains has carried more than 115 million passengers between London and the Continent, including London to Amsterdam by train for travellers looking to enjoy Amsterdam city breaks. Following their refurbishment these trains will continue to form a core part of the Eurostar fleet.
Eurostar is a founder member of Railteam, a partnership between Europe’s leading high-speed train operators that is developing simpler ways to book and travel on the fast-expanding, European high-speed rail network.
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