Wednesday, 3 April 2013

Kent County Council 'Overall Failure on Transport'

Kent Green Party has condemned the transport policies of Kent County Council as an 'overall failure.' Stuart Jeffery, Chair of Kent Green Party, explains:
"Obesity and avoidable illness are made worse in Kent by levels of car use. If we are serious about reducing the impact of avoidable health problems on the NHS, we have to make walking and cycling the most popular means of transport(1).
"But, out of 20 publications and submission Kent Green Party has compiled since early 2010, 10 are on transport since the policies of Kent County Council are a perverse concoction of pollution creating, road building and other money wasting fallacies(2). We judge that KCC’s transport policies are an overall failure in every aspect.
"Our County could be a quieter, cleaner and healthier place. But this cannot happen without policies to systematically reduce traffic levels. Kent Green Party wants:
1.      A fight for lower rail and bus fares(3);

2.      Allocation of resources away from road building and widening towards improving cycling and walking routes and creating better long-distance networks for both;
3.      Improved Green Travel Plans for all workplaces;
4.      Support for a rapid increase in the number of charging points for electric vehicles;
5.      Promotion of higher Air Passenger Duty to encourage more use of rail for getting into Europe and travelling within the UK, instead of more aircraft polluting our environment and making more noise each year"

Ends c241 words

FURTHER INFORMATION: Stuart Jeffery, Chair, KENT GREEN PARTY
07970 436029. Contact address as above. http://www.stuartjeffery.net Alternate contact, Steve Dawe, Press Officer on 07747 036192 or 01732 355185. Please leave message if necessary on any of these numbers and we will try to get back to you shortly. KENT GREEN NEWS, free monthly ezine, is available at www.kentgreenparty.org  Published by Kent Green Party and promoted by H.Dawe, both at 27, Audley Avenue, Tonbridge, Kent TN9 1XF.
Notes:
1.      Stuart Jeffery is the national Health spokesperson for the Green Party of England and Wales.

2.      Government policies clearly contribute also. SEE: http://www.kentgreenparty.org/publications.php KCC favours road-building, despite evidence that induced traffic generation fills up new road infrastructure making it worthless as a means of relieving congestion other than temporarily; it also favours airport expansion at Manston, port expansion without appropriate safeguards to reduce air pollution, and grossly inadequate cycling and walking routes throughout Kent.
3.      Rail fares are roughly 40% above the European average in the UK. In 2011, the complete social and environmental costs of car travel were about £56 billion, making the current subsidy to private motorists in the UK about £24 billion a year after taxes. But from 2001-2011, rail fares increased 62% in real terms and bus fares by 69%, whilst revenue from motoring taxes has actually decreased during the last ten years. So it isn’t motorists who are hard done by, it is rail and bus users.( p3 Institute for Public Policy Research  The War on Motoring: myth and reality: http://www.ippr.org/publication/55/9542/the-war-on-motorists-myth-or-reality This must include road spending and the costs of A&E and policing, as well as the health costs of air pollution which kills about 29,000 people a year in the UK. SEE: Air Pollution: the invisible killer www.keithtaylormep.org.uk)

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