"One of the ways to [reduce our carbon footprint] is to encourage drivers to opt for more environmentally friendly modes of transport." Shannon Jezzard
Shannon Jezzard

By Shannon Jezzard

With the growing concerns around climate change, there’s no doubt that we all need to and should do more to reduce our carbon footprint. One of the ways to do that is to encourage drivers to opt for more environmentally friendly modes of transport. That being said, as we know in Harlow, public transport can not only be expensive, but it’s also unreliable – so often it’s easier just to avoid it altogether if you have the much more efficient option of driving your own car.

Arriva, Harlow’s main bus service has been a subsidiary of the German government owned railway company Deutsche Bahn since 2010, so any profits raised by Arriva in the UK immediately goes to the nationalised service in Germany. Similarly Greater Anglia, known to have the most expensive trip per mile in the UK, is owned by state-owned Dutch national rail operator Nederlandse Spoorwegen. This calls for a great argument to nationalise the public transport services in this country, as any profits made can actually go into investing in improving the services and ultimately lowering the fares of public transport to make it accessible to people on all wages, rather than going into the pockets of companies abroad. As well as this, money needs to be invested in improving public transport services for wheelchair users and those with disabilities, as we can’t expect an increase in usage if the services on offer are not truly accessible.

With reliable, reasonably priced and accessible public transport I’m sure we would see a decrease in individual car usage, which would prove to have plethora of benefits from less wear and tear on the roads to reduced carbon emissions – and I certainly hope a fully nationalised public transport network is something we can strive for in the not too distant future under a Labour government.

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