BaNES Green Party's Response to Council 'Net Zero' Consultation

8 February 2022

Air Quality Matters

Bath and NE Somerset Green Party have published their response to the recent transport consultation “Journey to Net Zero”.

The Green Party aims to make transport understood as an accessibility issue rather than a mobility issue. It is concerned by the timelines and the commitment to the pace of change in the 'Journey to Net Zero', which needs more ambition to deliver net zero by 2030.

The Council as the Highway Authority has direct legal leverage to deliver transformational vision into action.

Bath and NE Somerset Green Party is calling on the WECA Mayor to put in place agreed strategic bus and cycle routes for the WECA region. We call upon WECA to seek precepting powers from central Government so that public transport including buses can be maintained effectively across the WECA region.

The Local Cycling Walking and Infrastructure Plan must add the agreed regional cycle map. This is vital and the LCWIP was only signed off in 2020 on condition of this map was added to this document.

The first priorities for funding and timescales should be on walking, cycling and disabled access.

Many of these proposals focus on high cost infrastructure and fail to notice that individuals make small journeys more often.  A timeline needs to be put in place delivering infrastructure which focuses on school streets, pedestrian and cycle crossings, cycle storage, zero tolerance for road accidents and a speed reduction strategy. To be more than a 'talking shop' the Council needs a clearer timeline for 'Journey to Net Zero' to deliver transformational change. This process needs to support all residents equally.

For a serious impact on emissions all transport decisions should focus on the three following themes: smaller, shorter and slower. This is essentially the only way that net zero 2030 is going to be reached.

The full response can be read here.

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