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05 Aug 2009 03:08:11

Airlines wary of UK plans to reduce carbon emissions through rail

Airlines wary of UK plans to reduce carbon emissions through rail
The aviation industry has criticised the UK government's transport promise to replace domestic short-haul flights with high-speed rail over the coming months.

According to the Guardian, transport secretary Lord Adonis' plan to introduce a 250mph train network in the UK as a replacement for short-haul flights has been widely dismissed by a number of airliners.

It is believed that rolling out the new rail network would help the UK's transport sector to significantly lower its carbon footprint.

The issue has become all-the-more important since the government revealed in its Low Carbon Transition Plan that it expects 20 percent of the annual required UK emissions cuts by 2020 to come from transport.

One of the airlines to express discontent with the proposal was budget carrier Ryanair, whose chief-executive Michael O'Leary told the newspaper that making rail the main link between the UK and Europe would be "insane".

The International Air Transport Association, which represents 200 airlines, added that it could be decades before the high-speed rail network is a reality, adding that a recent report by the University of Berkeley, California, had suggested rail is responsible for more emissions than people think.

Among the government's other plans to reduce carbon output from transport by 2020 are proposed regulations for tailpipe emissions for all newly-built cars.



Discussion Thread  

Duncan wrote:

06 Aug 2009

No surprise there really. Fancy, an industry protecting its own interests? Well I never!

Of course any new major construction project like this would have its own significant carbon footprint. Yet again, it comes down to how it is done, not what is done - i.e. construction techniques, mitigation, etc.

Remember though that even if the carbon emissions from the trains equalled those of the planes journey for journey, the trains emit at ground level, where carbon is 'expected' by the carbon cycle. There are no trees at 30K feet to uptake carbon emitted by plane engines.

Concern at a major infrastructure project like this is all well and good, but surely it would be a lot more credible if it didn't come from the very industry that stands to lose the most from it?

10 Aug 2009

I really think that airline industry is worried about this plan. I wrote an article about the way it'll impact domestic flight in UK, and Flybe goes undercover to respond to my post!!! They spy bloggers and didn't really like my post! Apparently the competition posed by the train seems to be a tough pill for them to swallow.... but anyways, Train is better for the environment!
My post on this topic : http://tiny.cc/r6Jom

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