ACCORDING to the Government’s national statistics, 44 per cent of all Bromsgrove’s greenhouse gas emissions comes from transport.
The 2012 census placed Bromsgrove local authority in the top 10 per cent for cars and vans per 1,000 people in England and Wales – it’s no wonder Bromsgrove’s emissions are so high and not decreasing.
Like carbon dioxide and the climate, there is a genuine link between air pollution and the rate of diagnosed asthma and deaths from circulatory disease.
The British Heart Foundation found there will be well over 160,000 air pollution-related deaths in the UK by 2030.
Looking at Bromsgrove’s planned new housing developments that will add thousands of extra cars at peak times, the future of the town centre will continue to be one of gridlock and congestion.
So what is the answer to Bromsgrove tackling climate change, air pollution and congestion?
More roads? Projects like the Bromsgrove A38 Eastern bypass were a hugely expensive undertaking both economically and ecologically, only tackling the problem short-term.
More roads lead to more cars and even more roads and, of course, more wildlife habitat destruction.
Electric cars? EVs are valuable tools to reduce air pollution and tackle climate change. However, they are still no free lunch as they still have quite a large carbon footprint and take up the same space on our roads.
Active travel! Modern jargon for walking, running, or riding a bike is the only long-term solution to all of the above as it reduces car use and improves the fitness of the person travelling.
For those longer commute times, active travel is best paired with a campaign for effective and subsidised public transport so local people can move quickly and cheaply around the region.
For a greener and clearer future, Bromsgrove’s motorists and councils can no longer live under the mantra of ‘there can be no limits to the growth of the car’. Instead, we need local people to make the transport mode change supported by local government with schemes like creating more widened footpaths.
So we ask: ‘Can you can Bromsgrove get active with travel?’
This advice is brought to you by Bromsgrove Climate Action.