Brisbane Council hypocritical on climate change & transport
Community Action for Sustainable Transport (CAST) want Brisbane City Council to put their money where their mouth is on climate change.
Council’s 2006-2007 budget allocates a tiny $412,000 to Greenhouse Gas Reduction (strategy 9.6.3) while pouring 503 million into planning for increased car use (page 102).
Per kilometre a person travelling in a car burns more than three times the fuel as someone in a bus and 42 times more fuel than a train passenger. (Australian Greenhouse Office 2002, National Greenhouse Gas Inventory 2000 with Methodology Supplements 1990, 1995 and 2002)
“If Council are serious about reducing greenhouse emissions then they must massively increase funding to their Greenhouse strategy and stop funding projects that will increase emissions”, said CAST spokesperson Tristan Peach.
The group are particularly concerned about Council’s misguided Transport policy.
“Council are planning to massively increase greenhouse emissions from Brisbane’s transport system over the next 20 years”, said Mr Peach
The Airport Link Environmental Impact Statement shows that Council are planning to increase the number of car trips from 3.6 million per day in 2004 to 5.2 million in 2026 (table 7-1 traffic and transport technical report). Vehicle kilomotres travelled in cars will increase to 55 million on an average weekday in 2012, 66 million in 2022 and 71 million in 2026 (table 9-8)
At the same time Council have abandoned the targets for increased public transport use in the Transport Plan for Brisbane and are only planning to increase public transport use from 7.5% of all trips in 2004 to 11.1% in 2026 (table 7-1 Airport Link traffic and transport technical report).
“Increasing public transport use by 0.16% each year over the next twenty years is simply not enough, and what are Council’s plans for walking and cycling, the most greenhouse friendly transport modes?” asked Mr Peach.
The idea that we can plan for increasing amounts of car use and let technology fix the problems has been refuted by Council’s own State of the Environment Report which states:
‘…relying on introduction of new technology into the vehicle fleet is not sufficient, given that uptake rates are slow and that these technologies often work efficiently only in well-maintained vehicles.’ (Air section – page 33)
Consultation undertaken after the establishment of Council’s climate change taskforce in late 2006 shows that the community know the best ways to reduce transport emissions:
‘Most suggestions promoted embracing transport options other than private motor vehicles. Suggestions included:
- reducing the cost of public transport for users
- increasing frequency, destinations, and connectivity of buses
- restricting car parking in the CBD and introducing a CBD congestion tax
- extending CityCat services
- improving connectivity and safety of pathways and bikeways’
CAST are holding a walk for sustainable transport on 11am Saturday February 17 in Queens Park, Brisbane City (Corner of Elizabeth and George Streets).
Media contact: Tristan Peach 0416478615