Traffic jam, Harrogate
Traffic jam, Harrogate

Transport for the North have produced a Decarbonisation Strategy, and a consultation is open for comments on it, from 7th June to 31st August 2021.

We have reached the point where those in authority no longer deny that there’s a climate problem, and they are happy to discuss it and produce documents focused on it. Unfortunately, there is a chasm between rhetoric and action.

Road transport is the main emitter of greenhouse gases in the north of England, and 70% of road trasnport emissions in the north come from the Major & Strategic Road Network. More than 50% of emissions are from cars, and 28% from HGVs. Car trips over 50km represent 1% of journeys but 14% of emissions.

TfN are aiming for reductions in CO2 emissions from transport as follows:

  • 55% between 2018 and 2030
  • 95% from 2018 to 2040, and
  • 2045 is a ‘close to zero’ date

TfN say that mode shift and demand reduction are the main ways the 2030 target will be achieved.

Scale of change needed for TfN Decarbonisation Strategy
Scale of change needed for TfN Decarbonisation Strategy

HDCA has commented on TfN’s Decarbonisation Strategy. The main point we make is that action to achieve the trajectories identified is not being taken.

TfN envisage reducing car trips on main roads, but at Junction 47 of the A1M and in other places, work is going to increase the rate at which drivers can access the motorway.

TfN suggest that housing developments should be close to existing public transport hubs, and support active travel commuting, but all Harrogate’s new developments are on the edge of town and devoid of bike paths.

2030 is not far away, and our local authorities haven’t started to take any of the steps needed to achieve a 55% reduction in emissions. There’s a chasm between rhetoric and action.

Transport for the North Decarbonisation Strategy

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