Wednesday, 14 April 2010

LibDem Manifesto - Transport section

This from the LibDems manifesto launched today...

public transport you can rely on
Britain needs a well-run, efficient transport system.

Public transport is an important part of a fair society and the best way to cut carbon emissions from transport without trying to limit people’s opportunities to travel.

We want to improve the experience for the traveller and cut carbon emissions.

We will:

  • Switch traffic from road to rail by investing in local rail improvements, such as opening closed rail lines and adding extra tracks, paid for by cutting the major roads budget.
  • Cut rail fares, changing the contracts with Train Operating Companies so that regulated fares fall behind inflation by 1 per cent each year, meaning a real-terms cut.
  • Make Network Rail refund a third of your ticket price if you have to take a rail replacement bus service.
  • Overhaul Network Rail to put the interests of passengers first and bring it under the Freedom of Information Act to make it more open.
  • Set up a UK Infrastructure Bank to invest in public transport like high speed rail.
  • Give councils greater powers to regulate bus services according to community needs so that local people get a real say over routes and fares.
  • Include the promotion of safer cycling and pedestrian routes in all local transport plans.

restricting aviation growth
The emissions from rising aviation are a serious problem in the fight against climate change. But in some more remote parts of the country, flights are a vital lifeline, and aviation is important for the economy as a whole.

Liberal Democrats believe that we should do all we can to ensure people use alternatives where that makes sense.

We will:
  • Replace the per-passenger Air Passenger Duty with a per-plane duty (PPD), so capturing freight movements by air for the first time.
  • Introduce an additional, higher rate of PPD on domestic flights for which alternative and less polluting travel is readily available.
  • Cancel plans for the third runway at Heathrow and any expansion of other airports in the South East.
a fair deal for motorists
Our planned expansion of public transport will provide much-needed alternatives to private cars, and cut carbon emissions.

However, in many places there will always be a need for car travel, so we need to ensure that it is as environmentally friendly as possible.

We will:
  • Work through the EU for a zero emissions target for all new cars by 2040 and extend targets to other vehicles.
  • Undertake preparations for the introduction of a system of road pricing in a second parliament. Any such system would be revenue neutral for motorists, with revenue from cars used to abolish Vehicle Excise Duty and reduce fuel duty, helping those in rural areas who have no alternatives to road travel. Some of the revenue from lorries
  • would be used to fund further extensions of high speed rail through the UK Infrastructure Bank.
  • Introduce a rural fuel discount scheme which would allow a reduced rate of fuel duty to be paid in remote rural areas, as is allowed under EU law.
Still no mention of Thameslink or indeed Crossrail in this one...