Carlton Reid Jul 29, 2021
Revisions to the Highway Code—the U.K. road safety manual first published in 1931—will result in motorists being officially relegated in the pecking order on Britain’s roads. Pedestrians will be at the top of a new road user hierarchy with motorists—who have the most potential to harm other road users—being told they now have the greatest responsibility to reduce the danger they pose to others.
This new hierarchy could have significant ramifications in future court cases involving motorists hitting cyclists and pedestrians.
The new Highway Code, subject to approval from parliament when MPs return from summer recess, will introduce strengthened pedestrian priority on sidewalks and when they are crossing or waiting to cross a road.
Study citing ‘perilous state’ of industrial civilisation ranks temperate islands top for resilience
New Zealand, Iceland, the UK, Tasmania and Ireland are the places best suited to survive a global collapse of society, according to a study.
The researchers said human civilisation was “in a perilous state” due to the highly interconnected and energy-intensive society that had developed and the environmental damage this had caused.
A collapse could arise from shocks, such as a severe financial crisis, the impacts of the climate crisis, destruction of nature, an even worse pandemic than Covid-19 or a combination of these, the scientists said.
Too many people in positions of responsibility for our transport system are failing to comprehend the urgency that climate scientists are trying to communicate.
Friends of the Earth therefore commissioned nine in depth papers to outline the practical immediate actions that must form the core of our transport strategy.
This paper builds on that work to provide a resource to support your local action.
Raleigh has announced the launch of its new Stride E-Cargo range with the aim of offering families a replacement for short car journeys.
With a whole section of Raleigh’s company dedicated to encouraging UK businesses to use cargo bikes for greener ‘last mile solutions’, Raleigh have long advocated cycles designed specifically for carrying heavy or bulky loads.
Previously used most often by delivery riders, new e-bike technology has seen recent demand for everyday family use grow across cities. With 68% of journeys in the UK under just five miles, e-cargo bikes offer a sustainable, time efficient and fun alternative for short trips like the school run or weekly shop.
Three councils are currently facing court action for removing cycle lanes
The DfT say local authorities must ‘always’ leave cycling and walking schemes in place long enough to be properly assessed after it was revealed three councils face court action for removing cycle lanes.
Minister of State for Transport, Chris Heaton-Harris said that the government would shortly be issuing guidance to all local transport authorities ‘making it clear’ that school streets, low traffic neighbourhoods, and cycle lanes, should be given time to have an impact.
He said: “The Department will be issuing updated statutory Network Management Duty guidance to all local transport authorities shortly which will make clear that they should always leave cycling and walking schemes in place for long enough for their impacts to be properly assessed.”
The statement came as Cycling UK revealed that three councils are currently facing court action for removing cycle lanes and experimental traffic orders.
BBC News23 hours ago
Campaigners have won a court battle to prevent the “scandalous” construction of a road tunnel near Stonehenge.
The £1.7bn Highways England project aimed to reduce A303 congestion but campaigners said it would detrimentally affect the world heritage site.
The government approved plans in 2020 for a two-mile (3.2km) tunnel to be created near the Wiltshire monument.
Mr Justice Holgate’s ruling means the order granted by transport secretary Grant Shapps has been quashed.
Highways England said it wanted to build the tunnel to reduce traffic and cut journey times on the A303, which is the most direct route for motorists travelling between the South East and South West and is used by thousands of people daily.
The BBC understands the project will have to be frozen while the government considers its next steps.
In his ruling the judge found Mr Shapps’ decision was “unlawful” on two grounds.
He found there was a “material error of law” in the government’s decision-making process as there was no evidence of the impact on each individual asset at the site.
And he said Mr Shapps had failed to consider alternative schemes, in accordance with the World Heritage Convention and common law.
The Silvertown Tunnel – which is due to be constructed under the Thames – is a remarkably good example of the political preference in transport policy and spending for large scale, ‘business as usual’ infrastructure projects. In spite of the rhetoric around climate change and decarbonisation, there is a lack of interest in zero carbon alternatives to big infrastructure. Large and expensive carbon generating projects are contrary to the purpose of declaring a climate emergency.
19 May 2021
The Government and councils are united in their commitment to help more people switch short car trips with safe and convenient walking and cycling journeys. More active travel and fewer car journeys reduces pollution and increases levels of exercise to improve public health. Less traffic also reduces congestion. To promote further action the Government introduced a step-change in its active travel ambition in ‘Gear Change: a bold vision for cycling and walking’ with £2 billion in new funding by 2024 to deliver on its aims. This urges councils to go further and faster to increase walking and cycling. This will involve some initially controversial decisions, in the reallocation of road space from cars. Low-traffic Neighbourhoods (LTNs) are a high-profile example of this kind of policy that polarises opinion in many quarters.
2 days ago By Roger Harrabin
The year 2020 was the third warmest, fifth wettest and eighth sunniest on record, scientists said in the latest UK State of the Climate report.
No other year is in the top 10 on all three criteria.
The experts said that, in the space of 30 years, the UK has become 0.9C warmer and 6% wetter.
The report’s lead author Mike Kendon, climate information scientist at the UK Met Office, told BBC News: “A lot of people think climate change is in the future – but this proves the climate is already changing here in the UK.
“As it continues to warm we are going to see more and more extreme weather such as heatwaves and floods.”
Transport minister Chris Heaton-Harris has told West Sussex County Council they will not be able to bid for further Active Travel Fund money because they removed pop-up cycle lanes before they were “fully tested”.
West Sussex received £780,000 from the DfT’s Covid-19 Emergency Active Travel Fund last summer to install seven temporary cycleways. However, the Conservative-controlled council removed the lanes just four months later (LTT 13 Nov 2020). A petition with more than 4,000 signatures had called for the lanes to be removed.
In a letter, dated 14 June, Heaton-Harris told the council that cycle lanes funded under the Emergency Active Travel Fund were “not allowed to be fully tested and/or optimised” before they were removed.