Promoting sustainable mobility in tourist travel to and from Barcelona

Tourism is an activity with a major economic and environmental impact on the city of Barcelona. In 2019, almost 14 million tourists spent at least one night in the city, 81% of whom arrived by plane, generating 9.1 million tonnes of CO2.

In addition, climate change is expected to have a negative impact on the city of Barcelona in terms of temperature increase, coastal erosion and pressure on water resources. This will jeopardise tourism resources.

Mobility operations to and from Barcelona are the main CO2 emitters, so if we want to achieve the emission reduction targets set by local, national and European administrations, immediate and far-reaching actions must be taken to significantly reduce emissions from tourist mobility. It is therefore essential to promote modal shift to rail.

Barcelona’s attractiveness as a tourist destination could suffer if we do not curb emissions. This is why we propose the creation of a “Barcelona Destination Zero” brand, as a distinctive element of a city with a clear commitment to reducing emissions.

It is essential to include the decarbonisation of tourist mobility at the heart of the political, economic and climate agenda and to ensure a coherent alignment of policies for a more sustainable development of the city.

This project has been funded by the Barcelona City Council’s Climate Plan.