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Transport for Everyone calls for emissions education

As more people turn to driving post COVID, peak transport advocacy group, Transport for Everyone (T4e) is asking that the Victorian Government better educate Melburnians on the adverse impact on emissions of driving fuel-based vehicles, especially for short trips.

T4e highlights the New Zealand Energy Efficiency & Conservation Authority (NZ EECA) finding released last Friday, that 3 out of 5 people did not know that reducing the use of petrol and diesel cars is one of the most effective means of reducing emissions and climate change.

This is despite reducing fuel usage from driving being nearly four times more effective in reducing emissions than recycling from the waste stream. Thus the EECA is urging Kiwis to swap the car especially for short trips.

T4e urges Melburnians to similarly think about their contribution to city emissions, poor air quality and related morbidity impacts, through driving and consider simple alternatives.

T4e President, Jackie Fristacky AM, joins the NZ EECA in emphasising that “It is short car trips of 1 to 2 kilometres that produce the highest emissions compared to longer trips, because cold engines use more fuel, and multiple short trips bring more toxic emissions.”

“With over 20% of car trips being under 2 kilometres, 10% under 1 kilometres, and 50% under 5 kilometres, these trips can readily be converted to walking or cycling, with huge multiple benefits in reducing emissions, congestion, travel cost burdens on households and improving health,” said President Fristacky.

Data from the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources have shown that, while emissions from energy sources have fallen, emissions from transport were 33% higher in 2018-19 than in 2001-2002.

Further, our National Transport Commission has identified that passenger cars in Australia produce 41% more emissions per km than in Europe and 16% more than in the USA.

T4e has written to the Premier, Treasurer and key Ministers seeking that the Government combat rising emissions from transport by allocations in the May 2021 budget to upscale investment in walking, cycling, electric buses and electric vehicle recharging, vastly improving smart bus frequency and cross-own connectivity, and urging Victorians to use alternatives to driving, especially for short trips.

Transport for Everyone is an alliance of existing transport and planning organisations, combined with individuals with an acknowledged expertise in transport, land use planning and sustainable community and economic development.

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