Transport Minister Wendy Morton has addressed proposals to electrify the railway line between Wolverhampton and Shrewsbury, hoping that a study on the costs and benefits of the scheme would be ready by the summer.
Shrewsbury and Atcham MP Daniel Kawczynski, addressed the scheme and asked Mrs Morton if the scheme would be delivered in the current parliament. Morton would respond to this with claims that Midlands Connect, the regional transport body, would be compiling a list of proposals with the ambition to improve journey times between Birmingham and Shrewsbury.
Morton’s words were:
"When completed, the outputs of this work will be presented in a strategic outline business case, which I hope to receive this summer,"
"The business case will provide an assessment of delivery timescales, costs, and benefits of the scheme, and the department will make a formal assessment of the proposals upon receipt of the business case."
One of the key benefits involved in a scheme like this, is the environmental impact and aid in the ongoing fight to achieve carbon net zero in rail by 2035, as outline in the Williams-Shapps Plan for Rail. The industry already represents the greenest form of public transport that exists within the UK and the continued electrification of rail lines across the country is a major contributing factor to the sustainability within the industry.
Mr Kawczynski echoed this sentiment as he pressed Andrew Stephenson, the Minister of State at the Department for Transport, on this topic:
"I have certainly promised the young electorate in Shrewsbury to campaign to reduce CO2 emissions,"
"We are working very hard to secure the electrification of the line between Shrewsbury and our regional capital of Birmingham."
"It is very important that Shrewsbury is served by trains that are not diesel and we are reducing CO2 emissions."
Mr Stephenson would then respond to the sentiments, outlining that the Government do have a vested interest in rail electrification, wanting to increase the amount spanning across the country:
“We have a good record over the past 11 years on electrification, but we want to go further and faster as we decarbonise the railways across the UK," he said.”
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