Saturday, April 20, 2013

Scottish Socialist Party makes the case for free public transport #yesscot


• Free fares would be the biggest single pro-environment policy enacted by any national government anywhere on the planet, dramatically slashing car use and CO2 emissions.• Free fares would be the biggest anti-poverty, pro-social inclusion policy enacted in Scotland, or anywhere else in the UK. It is mainly people on low incomes who rely on public transport

• Free fares would cut the number of road accidents, reducing human suffering and relieving pressure on the NHS and the emergency services. The Scottish Executive estimates that road accidents cost £1.4 billion a year to the Scottish economy. (On an average day in Scotland there is one fatal road accident; another 8-10 involving serious injury; and 250-300 minor accidents. The vast majority involve cars.)

• Free fares would be help to reduce the levels of asthma and other respiratory illnesses, which have risen steeply in line with the expansion of road traffic

• Free fares would potentially increase the spending power of over a million workers by between £40 and £100 a month, boosting the overall economy.

• Free fares would increase business efficiency and productivity: the CBI estimates that traffic congestion costs business across Britain between £15 and £20 billion a year.

• Free fares would be a major tourist attraction, bringing hundreds of millions of pounds into the Scottish economy every year from increased visitor numbers. An increase in tourism of just 20 per cent would bring an extra £1 billion into the Scottish economy.

• Free fares would attract worldwide support, especially from the global environmental movement, and would bring pressure to bear on governments throughout Europe and the wider world to adopt a similar policy.

• Free fares would reduce Scotland’s reliance on depleting oil reserves; 67 per cent of all oil produced globally is used for transport.

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