Friends Of The Earth have responded to news that the Scottish Government have launched a new campaign to boost cycling.
Reacting to the Launch of Transport Scotland’s “Cycling Action Plan for Scotland 2017-2020” today, Air Pollution Campaigner Emilia Hanna said:
“Traffic-derived air pollution is causing a public health crisis in Scotland, so getting more people walking and cycling is a key part of the solution. The Government’s own analysis shows that one of the main reasons why people do not walk and cycle is because they do not feel safe, so we need many more good quality walking and cycling paths that make it possible for people of all ages and abilities to choose pollution-free travel modes.
Our addiction to the car is killing us
“Today only 1.4% of trips are by bike, a statistic which goes a long way to explaining why we have such a dramatic air pollution health crisis and high carbon emissions from our transport sector. Whilst we welcome the Scottish Government’s commitment to its vision that 10% of trips will be made by bike by 2020, it is not at all on track to achieving this. The 10% vision will be undeliverable unless the Government reallocates some of its transport budget away from road and motorway building and towards walking and cycling paths.
“Our addiction to the car is killing us, but the Scottish Government is currently fuelling that addiction by pouring hundreds of millions of pounds into building new motorways and trunk roads, with only a tiny fraction of its transport budget left over for walking and cycling projects.
“Edinburgh Council is proof that investment in cycling works. It has allocated an increasing share of its transport budget to active travel, and as a result cycling levels have soared.”