Mobility meets Sustainability: The Movin’On 2018 Conference Wrap Up

June 7, 2018 by  Howard Chang

A lot is being said and written about sustainable mobility, electric vehicles, livable cities, etc. but what is actually being done? Moving past the rhetoric, Michelin has created a unique conference for mobility experts that is more lab than conference. The 3-day event brought together disparate stakeholders including automobile brands, regional governments, technology incubators, green energy, mass transit, cycling and many others to solve specific challenges.

My host at Michelin, Vincent Bayet, ensured I was able to attend all the key workshops that ticked off my interests like MAAS (mobility as a service), Ai and autonomous vehicles, city design and of course cycling infrastructure. And work we did! Each work shop had fantastic facilitators who gave us specific problems to work on. Some had already been started by previous groups that we then had to add our thinking and solutions. What I loved about this process was creating tangible proposals for issues such as regulating autonomous vehicles, building sustainable mobility infrastructure and making roads safer for all users. Who knows, some of my ideas may actually make it into the real world!

We were also introduced to very inspiring technology. A key theme was electrification. Ecotune of Montreal displayed a handsome Ford F-150 pickup that was converted to 100% electric power! And the savings on fuel more than pays for the retrofit in just 4 years. We also saw electrified Isuzu short haul trucks, delivery bicycles and even an eye-popping electric police motorcycle. I was truly amazed at the number of small firms literally changing the landscape with electric offerings.

But it was more than just the niche players getting into green tech. BMW had EVs and hybrids on test including the rather intimidating i8 plug in hybrid GT, which I had a chance to drive. Michelin is already a leader in sustainability and is leading a global commitment to recycling tires that will help bring the world to 100% recycled by 2048. In addition, they showed off stunning future tech like the Vision concept tire based on #biomimicry to create an airless wheel/tire system that will allow users to 3D print tread patterns for variable uses: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tyc4Apyk2Rc

The tech and the workshops were inspiring but the best part of #MovinOn2018 was meeting and sharing with thought leaders from around the world. I met people from China, France, USA, Brazil, Japan and Israel, to name a few. This global perspective and focus on finding solutions really differentiated this conference from so many others I have attended in this sector. Next year please join me in beautiful Montreal at the Movin’On 2019 Conference from June 4-6, 2019 and be part of the mobility revolution.

Watch the recap of #MovinOn2018 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1AfcIKZa9E8&feature=youtu.be