Chris Boardman at the launch of the Mayor of London’s “Vision for Cycling ” (Photo: The Times)
“Cameron climbs aboard cycle revolution” announced The Times (April 25th 2013) to describe the statement of the Prime Minister in response to the “Get Britain Cycling” (GBC) report. But describing his response we see that while he “endorsed the report”, he “stopped short of committing himself to forcing through change”. Chris Boardman, the former Olympic and World champion with years of experience in supporting cycling as a form of everyday transport, criticised the Prime Minister’s lack of ambition: “It is the kind of statement that is incredibly frustrating and even makes me angry”. Is Boardman right to feel this way? Continue reading →
First, the good news: another academic study using conventional cost-benefit analysis finds that motorists in the 27 EU countries have a net economic cost to society, with the UK second only to Germany in costs. Take a look at the nice short summary in the Guardian. It’s good to counteract what the Guardian correctly calls “The perennial complaint from drivers that they are excessively taxed”, not least the prejudice that cyclists are cheating by “not paying a tax”. The figure given for these external costs – £48 billion per annum, some £10 billion more than the total of motoring taxation revenue – looks pretty damning. However, it can be argued that the costs of motoring to society are considerably greater than those in the picture painted in the study, and that the report is inadequately critical of the status quo.
No, it didn’t come from Government or the “road safety” lobby. It comes from the mainstream Institute for Public Policy Research (IPPR) which calls for an end to delays in fuel duty increases. It is not radical in its recommendation – calling for no further cuts in fuel duty, rather than an increase. Nevertheless, a mainstream think tank opposing the ideas that there is a war on motorists” and that fuel duty should not be increased is welcome. Here is what they say in summary: Continue reading →
By any measures that make sense, anyway, the costs of motoring since the era of Blair and Prescott (1997) and from 2000 can be seen to have gone down. This is according to two tables of statistics publcihed by the Department for Transport Continue reading →
It’s time to write again about the costs of motoring (no, not to its victims, just to car users), as we are in another spasm of a particularly unpleasant feature of car culture. This is the presentation of alleged motorist victimhood through the mangling and abuse of the English language. It’s worth examining this self-pitying culture as we have – as so often with “road safety” ideology and parts of car culture – an inversion of reality displayed to us.
According to Robert Halfon MP, families are being “crucified” by high petrol prices But should we see the Great British Motorist as Jesus nailed to the cross?
This book, one of the main sources of evidence for the road danger reduction approach, is now out of print. A few copies are available from the author. Here are what reviewers have said: Continue reading →
The continuing saga of Blackfriars Bridge has revealed a more high profile and combative London Cycling Campaign, preparing a new strategy for the organisation the year before the Mayoral elections. Will this be the way towards getting “the cyclised City”?
Consider LCC CEO Ashok Sinha’s approach as described in London Cyclist June-July 2011 (pp.16 – 18). Having stated that London is indisputably not a cyclised city, and not on a trajectory towards becoming one, how are we to remedy the situation (an issue we have addressed before here , here , and here ? The answer for him is “everything” Continue reading →