TSSA today (Wednesday) condemned Chancellor Rishi Sunak’s budget as “the wrong budget for a climate emergency”.
In his budget speech Sunak announced cuts to fuel duty, and a lower rate of air passenger duty for domestic flights but offered no reduction for rail ticket prices despite the growing climate crisis.
TSSA General Secretary Manuel Cortes said “This is the wrong budget for a climate emergency. It will do nothing to decarbonise travel.
“We should be encouraging people to take the train by cutting rail ticket prices and investing in station staff to make the railways more attractive.”
Domestic air flights cause seven times the carbon impact of rail journeys, and car journeys produce more than four times the greenhouse gas per passenger mile as travelling by rail. Yet, with COP26 just around the corner, the Chancellor opted to use his budget to subsidise road and air travel rather than incentivising rail travel.
Cortes added, “We have a budget speech today that actively encourages people to increase their carbon footprint. The Chancellor, Rishi Sunak, has got this badly wrong.
“Glasgow hosts COP26 next week. Britain will have no moral authority to lecture the rest of the world on reducing their carbon footprint unless we start getting serious about making rail travel cheaper and more attractive. That means investing in infrastructure, investing in staffing, and cutting ticket prices. Not incentivising air and road travel!”
Source for carbon statistics: https://the-way-forward.org/