Will the Government's new Plan succeed in shrinking transport's carbon footprint?
Let's make transport better, greener and fairer for all.
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** How to shrink transport's carbon footprint?
This week the Government published its long-awaited Transport Decarbonisation Plan. With transport the biggest single source of UK carbon emissions, the Plan has a vital role to play. You might be one of the many people ([link removed]) who responded to the Government's consultation on what should be in it. So is the final plan up to scratch?
While launching the Plan the Transport Secretary was at pains to say that people's lives won't change much: "We will still drive, but increasingly in zero emission cars", he said.
We know that zero emission cars will play a really important part in shrinking transport's carbon footprint, so the Government's commitment to phase out more polluting vehicles is very welcome. But greener cars aren't a silver bullet, so the Transport Secretary's words raised concerns.
The good news is that – by contrast – the Plan itself recognises the need for more journeys to shift to public transport, walking and cycling. We were very glad to read these words:
"We must increase the share of trips taken by public transport, cycling and walking. We want to make these modes the natural first choice for all who can take them."
- Decarbonising Transport: A Better, Greener Britain
This is great because bikes, trains, buses, coaches and trams can reduce our carbon footprint – and they're ready and waiting right now. Rail travel, for instance, produces ([link removed]) less than a quarter the amount of greenhouse gas as driving.
But the Plan lacks any concrete measures to rebalance pricing and make public transport more affordable. It makes no sense that bus and rail fares continue to rise while fuel duty for drivers has been frozen for a decade and the Government is considering cutting air passenger duty.
You can find out lots more about the Plan in our new blog.
Read our blog on the Transport Decarbonisation Plan ([link removed])
And please take a moment to add your name to our campaign ([link removed]) , 'The way forward is public transport'. With most Covid restrictions lifting on Monday, it's more important than ever that the Government backs public transport to avoid a future of traffic jams, dirty air and soaring carbon emissions. If you agree, it would be brilliant to have you on board.