Kent Green Party rejects Kent County Council’s repeated assertions in the media that Kent needs a Lorry Park. Steve Dawe explains:
“Kent Green Party does not accept Kent County Council’s claims that Kent needs a new Lorry Park. First, the continuing recession in the UK and Europe has cut lorry movements(1). Given Europe-wide excessive austerity policies which have been questioned by the International Monetary Fund and many leading economists, this decline is likely to continue for the foreseeable future. Second, increased costs in the road haulage sector from fuel price increases and new charges on heavy goods vehicles may well push more goods on to rail(2).
“If the continuing success of farmers markets throughout Kent and Medway is combined with even more purchasing from local producers, then we could see steady reduction in Heavy Goods Vehicles on our roads. Since one 38 ton Heavy Goods Vehicle does as much damage to roads in a year as 100,000 family cars, this is no bad thing for our cracked and potholed roads that the County Council cannot afford to repair (3).”
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FURTHER INFORMATION: Steve Dawe, Press Officer, KENT GREEN PARTY, on 01732 355185 or 07747 036192. Contact address as above. Promoted by H.Dawe for Kent Green Party, both at 27 Audley Avenue, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1XF. KENT GREEN NEWS, free ezine, is available by subscription at www.kentgreenparty.org
1. SEE: http://www.rha.uk.net/members/economic_update/content/14609/economic_update_25th_january_2012 AND http://www.ifw-net.com/freightpubs/ifw/index/sarkozy-bid-to-arrest-decline-in-french-road-haulage-sector/20017902252.htm?source=ezine&utm_source=IFW+Daily+News+Bulletin&utm_campaign=e5c9c639f9-IFW_8_9_119_8_2011&utm_medium=email
2. Oil prices remain volatile, with global oil supplies peaking in 2006 according to the International Energy Agency. See summary document of their World Energy Outlook at http://www.iea.org/Textbase/npsum/weo2010sum.pdf HGVs, both foreign and domestic, will be paying for using road transport infrastructure in future, if the Government gets it way in a current consultation: The consultation may be found at: http://www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/dft-2012-03This consultation does not mention the environment, the contribution of traffic emissions to air pollution and climate change or the need for a shift towards electric vehicles to eliminate pollution from heavy goods vehicles altogether. A Kent Green Party response is in preparation, but it is better if there are a lot of responses. Your response should reach the consultation no later than 18th April, and can be sent to: HGVcharging@dft.gsi.gov.uk
3. Kent County Council has about £40 million in this financial year to repair roads when it needed £250 million. This is a legacy of two bad winters, and takes no account of damage done to roads this winter.