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75:25 Transport Vision

75:25 Transport Vision

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Published by: greenparty_ie on Feb 15, 2011
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75:25TRANSPORT VISION
The Green Party’s 10-point plan forpeople-focussed, low-emissions transport.
vote.greenparty.ie
RENEWINGIRELANDON FEB 25TH VOTE GREEN
 
Introduction
 Recognition of a changing energy landscape must be at the heart of investmentdecisions in the transport sector. Future governments will be faced with twin energychallenges: a decreasing supply and an increasing cost of oil, and stricter limits onthe amount of greenhouse gases we emit. It is vital therefore that environmentallysustainable choices are made now to ensure Ireland's long term energy security anddeliver a sustainable transport systemThe Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland (SEAI) has charted the significant rise inenergy use in the transport sector 
1
. Energy use grew by 181% from 1990 to 2007with transport accounting for 43% of total energy demand. Over a similar time periodthe EPA estimates transport related greenhouse gas emissions increased by 165%between 1990 and 2006.While these rises have tapered as a result of the recession and less goods andpeople being transported, it is vital that the underlying trends of high oil dependencybe addressed. Ninety nine percent of our transport energy use in 2009 wasdependent on oil products, all of which were imported. We have a high dependenceon the private car as a mode of transport. We also have a legacy of poor planningand urban sprawl that will leave us highly vulnerable to a sustained rise in oil prices.It is against this backdrop that the Green Party advocates investment inenvironmentally sustainable transport modes. This means investing in publictransport rather than building new high spec roads. It means proper planning over urban sprawl and championing carbon free means of travel such as cycling andwalking in our towns and cities. The Green Party in Government commenced thatshift with the prioritisation of the Smarter Travel Policy, the introduction of a robustplanning framework, reform of the bus network and the establishment of the NationalTransport Authority.Our new economic reality also impacts on how our transport investment is plannedfor. Under the National Recovery Plan, the capital allocation for transport has beenreduced to
 €
4.8bn for 2010 - 2014, down from the
 €
6.8bn envisaged under theInfrastructural Investment Priorities. Subsidies to CIE for buses and trains have beensimilarly reduced.In the context of doing more with less the Green Party sets out its Ten Point Plan for a sustainable, energy secure transport system that will meet the needs of futuregenerations for years to come.
1. Reprioritising Transport 21
The economic growth projections on which Transport 21 were set are not achievable.It is the Green Party’s view that the programme will therefore have to be radicallyreorganised to match both a new budget and a changed future energy landscape.Reducing our dependency on imported oil and providing a long term sustainabletransport network will be central to any future transport investment decisions of theGreen Party in Government.
1
 http://www.seai.ie/Publications/Statistics_Publications/EPSSU_Publications/Energy_in_Transport/EPSSU_Transport_Rpr_Fnl_Dec07.pdf 
 
Such an investment must be viewed not just in terms in the provision of alternativemodes of commuter transport, but as protecting the Irish transport sector againstsharp rises in the price of oil. There needs therefore to be an urgent investment intransport solutions that are low carbon and sustainable.
2. Investment in Public, not Private, Transport
The majority of our capital investing in coming years must focus on public transport.There have been significant improvements to Ireland’s road network in the last fiveyears, with motorways linking our main cities and towns. 76% of Transport 21 fundingto date has been invested in roads, with only 24% going to public transport.The Green Party will reverse this trend, investing in public transport over roads by aratio of 3:1, and prioritising major labour intensive public transport projects such asMetro North and the Dart Interconnector.
3. Improving our Rail Network
Let’s speed up our Intercity trains. A modern, well run, rail system is vital to our economic recovery. We will continue to build on the significant investment in the railnetwork that was a feature of our term in Government, with the opening of three newrail lines and the upgrading of rolling stock. A continued investment of 
 €
100m per annum in the railway network is necessary to ensure it can compete with themotorway system. Reducing journey times on Intercity routes through improvedsignalling, junction and track improvements and the separation of fast and slowservices should be the focus of investment in the coming years.The Green Party will:
 
Prioritise the construction of Metro North.
 
Prioritise the delivery of the DART Underground Interconnector, advancingplanning and preparatory works.
 
Advance Phase 2 and progress planning for Phase 3 of the Western RailCorridor.
 
Advance project planning for the Navan Rail Project.In addition, we will focus on:
 
Re-examining the potential for passenger services through the Phoenix ParkTunnel in the short term while the Interconnector is being planned.
 
Adopting the Community Rail Partnership approach to run rural and lightlyused rail lines such as Rosslare – Waterford, as opposed to closing them.
 
Developing a new management, planning and marketing strategy aimed atenticing new rail freight business in order to revitalise the industry and openup freight services to competition to provide a more reliable and efficientservice.
 
Introducing Real Time Passenger Information at all railway stations and halts.
 
Promote integrated car hire and taxi booking at all mainline rail stations

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