"\"\\\"\\\\\\\"This is the continuation of my post of January 27th All the comments from my blogging friends are very much appreciated. Comments feed my blog and give me more ideas for future posts. One of the comments, a question really, was from loveable_homebodyh who asked: Why do you think you have always had wanderlusthh I thought about this for a while and believe it is a combination of several things. When I was a child staying at my grand-parents' house there were few toys so my grandpa would bring me a small suitcase full of postcards, old and new, from many regions of France, Europe and the world. I would spend hours looking at them and ask questions about all these far-away places and dream about them. Click on the following pictures to enlarge them.\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\nFor the last five years, we have been investing large sums in rail and maritime transport. Thanks to our privileged location on the Mediterranean, Italy will become one of the most important corridors for traffic. That is why we have launched a reform of our ports and a more generally reflections about the whole domain of logistics. In order to develop our motorways on the seah, in 2004 we created an ecobonush, which costs us 150 million per year. This policy is beginning to bear fruit.\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\nMr. Jouko Skinnari, President of the Economic Commission for the Finnish Parliament. Finland has nuclear power plants, and by 2020 a new system with new safety standards will be applied. Our priority will continue to be saving energy. Can road transport be replaced by waterway, maritime, or rail transporth These are the challenges that must be met at the European level. There is a very strong transportation axis between Finland and Russia, as well as links with the other countries of the European Union.\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\nConcerning rail transport, we are trying to improve our international links with Belgium and Germany, but sometimes one could wonder if it wouldn't be easier to go to the moon than to get new trains! The idea is to find the right balance between respect for the environment and economic growth, which must go hand in hand and which innovation will allow us to reconcile.\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\nMr. Miguel Frasquilho, Member of the Public Works, Transport, and Communes Commission of the Assembly of the Portuguese Republic. I am delighted with this initiative taken by the French National Assembly and Senate on this fundamental question of transport and sustainable development. In Europe, transport by road dominates the other means of land transport. The principal strategy, for individuals, consists of encouraging the use of public transportation rather than the use of private vehicles, and for freight, to favour railways. We must also develop waterway and maritime transport for shipping over longer distances.\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\nPortugal has seen sharp increases in international transport during the last ten years, but the maritime shipment of merchandise has lost ground, since it now accounts for only 62% of transport, as against 76% previously, whereas the share of road transport has grown from 22% to 35%. Road traffic with the European Union henceforth represents 62% of total traffic, to compare with 50% ten years ago; it is followed by maritime traffic whose share has declined from 48% to 33%.\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\n\\\\\\\\r\\\\\\\\nA project to which we hold particularly is that of Renault-Nissan to promote hybrid vehicles. The accent will first be placed on commercial vehicles since Israel will be equipped with such vehicles by 2011. Renault-Nissan counts on playing the role of precursor in this domain. The Portuguese government has concluded an accord with the Franco-Japanese manufacturer to participate in this project, which now concerns three countries - Portugal, Israel, and Denmark - where electric vehicles will be tested. It is the type of project that all countries should support so that any success in public transport may subsequently be extended to private vehicles.\\\\\\\"\\\"\"