New CIHT President highlights the need to change how and why we travel

The industry needs to continue to embrace more sustainable transport in the future if it wants to have a positive impact on the nation’s health, according to Karen McShane, the new President of the Chartered Institution of Highways & Transportation (CIHT) .

It announced her appointment this week as President for 2023/24 At her Presidential Inauguration event at the CIHT’s offices in London, Karen called for a need for ‘climate action to drive attitudinal change on how and why we travel’.

She said: “Climate change is a key challenge to society. The Climate Change (Targeted Greenhouse Gases) Order 2023 is one of the latest pieces of legislation taking climate action to the next level. These regulations firmly impact upon how we all do our business and how we need to consider future development.

“To provide a planet that is fit for our future generations, we must embrace as monumental a change as when the Victorians introduced both our railway networks and our water infrastructure. The latter has had as big an impact on health as the medical industry and we do not want transport to be remembered in the future as a negative contributor to the health of our planet.”

As part of CIHT’s year under Karen McShane, this focus on climate action will see the Institution embark on a number of activities and initiatives that will have the decarbonisation of the highways, transport and infrastructure sector as a central theme.

Other areas of focus:

  • A Commitment to Equality Diversity and Inclusion – including an update to CIHT’s EDI Toolkit and Charter
  • Enhanced offerings for Education and CPD through – including new courses and content on CIHT Learn
  • Putting People at the centre of all we do – including new opportunities and services for CIHT’s volunteers and the wider membership.
  • Ends

CIHT’s AGM also saw the election of Professor Glenn Lyons, Mott MacDonald Professor of Future Mobility at UWE Bristol as the Vice-President of CIHT.

Ms McShane is a Chartered Engineer with over 35 years of experience having worked in local government and consultancy. For 22 years Karen worked throughout UK and Ireland for a multinational company becoming a Director in 2005. She set up her own consultancy in 2011 where she oversaw work in a range of sectors including transport, highways and the private sector.

She joined the Strategic Investment Board as an adviser in 2012 and works part time on regionally significant projects within Northern Ireland as well as being an industry member of the Legislatives Assembly All Party Group for Construction.


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