Latest Rail News

08.11.12

‘Substantial’ carbon cuts from HS2 phase 2

HS2 will help the UK to meet its carbon emissions targets, a major environmental report has suggested.

In particular, the second phase of HS2, to Manchester and Leeds, is expected to lower carbon emissions. The first phase, the new line between London and the West Midlands, creates carbon savings of 1.8m tonnes of CO2 over sixty years, more than offsetting the effects of construction. But the second phase quadruples these savings to over 7m tonnes of CO2.

The report was commissioned by Greengauge 21 and conducted by three major environmental organisations – the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE), RSPB and the Campaign for Better Transport.

Greengauge 21 director Jim Steer said: “As HS2 is extended further north, the time savings and reliable high-quality services will attract more and more people out of cars and planes – and this is where the substantial carbon savings are to be made.

“The Government is expected to publish plans on the high-speed routes to Leeds and Manchester next month and we welcome these as an essential element of a low-carbon future for Britain.”

The report emphasises that superior carbon reductions are attainable through implementing complementary policies and through the efficient utilisation of the facilities of HS2. Cities on the HS2 network are advised to consider this when planning their connections to the line.

Steer added: “The benefits of HS2 extend far beyond the future users of high-speed rail services. Space will be freed up on the existing railway for improved local passenger services and for more freight trains. This in turn will reduce the numbers of cars and lorries on our road network, providing environmental benefits for local communities. At last there is a prospect of fewer lorries on the M6 and the M1.”

The report is at: www.greengauge21.net/wp-content/uploads/The-carbon-impacts-of-HS2-final-2012.pdf

Tell us what you think – have your say below, or email us directly at opinion@railtechnologymagazine.com 

Comments

Les   08/11/2012 at 18:52

The village I used to live in, and where my Mum still lives, will be totally ruined and at least half of it will be unfit for human habitation.. All to benefit people in London and Birmingham, total misery and no benefits at all for the people who live on the route. An expensive and damaging red herring.

Peter   09/11/2012 at 13:09

All 'ifs' and 'maybes' - similar to most of the reasons to build the thing in the first place........... QUOTE 'the time savings and reliable high-quality services will attract more and more people out of cars and planes – and this is where the substantial carbon savings are to be made.' NO FACTS! QUOTE 'Space will be freed up on the existing railway for improved local passenger services and for more freight trains. This in turn will reduce the numbers of cars and lorries on our road network, providing environmental benefits for local communities. At last there is a prospect of fewer lorries on the M6 and the M1.” DREAM ON !!

Tim   09/11/2012 at 16:13

Peter, that story includes a link to the full report, where there are plenty of facts, sources and evidence - it's about 60 pages long!

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