Don Foster MP*

Personal Car Travel has increased by 84% since 1970

In response to the Transport Secretary’s seminar on congestion, the Liberal Democrats are publishing new figures showing that 30-49 year olds are responsible for more than half of all traffic growth in Britain, while the total distance travelled by car in Great Britain for personal travel has increased by 84% over the past thirty years.

Main ImageData from Parliamentary Questions highlights the fundamental challenges to reducing car use in Britain. It shows that since the mid 1970s:

· The total distance travelled by car in Great Britain for personal travel has increased 84% - from 94 billion miles per annum to around 207 billion miles per annum.
· Commuting has been responsible for over a quarter of the total increase in traffic; trips made for shopping have caused 17% of the growth; and 10% has been caused by increased travel by car for business.
· More than half of the growth in car traffic can be attributed to journeys made – as car drivers – by people in the 30-49 year age category.

Don Foster MP, Liberal Democrat Shadow Transport Secretary, said:

“Alistair Darling really needs to look much more closely at exactly what has been responsible for the remorseless rise of car traffic on Britain’s roads. Road charging may go someway to tackling congestion but it is only one part of the range of solutions that the Government needs to look at adopting.

“Traffic growth has been driven by certain types of journey made by certain types of people. Over 50% of traffic growth in the past thirty years is attributable to 30-49 year olds driving further than ever before. Commuting, shopping trips and business trips are the prime culprits.

“The Government needs to look much more closely at the reasons why people drive and where they travel to. Unless people are provided with a safe, reliable and affordable alternative to car use any attempts to stop Britain’s roads grinding to a halt will fail.”

This article published: 14/06/2023

Published by Bath Liberal Democrats, 31 James St West, Bath, BA1 2BT. Printed and hosted by JPC Infonet, 2 St Georges Works, Trowbridge, Wiltshire, BA14 8AA. Your Privacy._blank


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