Back to: How we travel agenda
Sarah: Okay. So you're now gonna hear from the final three speakers in this panel. And welcome back again to those joining us online. The first speaker on this panel is also an informant, so someone who's going to summarise research and views rather than give you their own opinion. His name is Jason Torrence. He's from an organisation called UK 100, and he's going to talk about fairness and how that relates to surface transport. After Jason, you're then gonna hear from two speakers who are advocates, so people who are going to give you either their own opinion or the opinion of the organisation that they work for. They're both going to talk about ways to make change happen. So that will become clear what that means, that when they're speaking. The first of those people is Steve Melia, he is from the University of West England, and then the second person is actually two people because they're going to share the space and talk together. And one of those people is Paul Buchanan from an organisation called Voltera, and the other one is John Siraut from an organisation called Jacobs.#
So the same thing applies as usual with this. So we're going to stop after each speaker to give you a chance to write down questions. You have your yellow and red cards. If you want a card to speak up. We are recording what the speakers is saying and there are copies of the slides on your tables. If you'd like to use them, I just pause the second if table facilitators want to give out slides, I don't know if you do. Okay, so our first speaker then for the second part of the panel is Jason Torrence from UK 100.
Jason Torrance: Hello. So here in Birmingham today, a nine-year-old child could die up to seven months earlier than the national average if exposed to air pollution over their lifetime. Now that's research, published last year from King's College, London and I think exposes one of the challenges and one of the realities of the inequality in relation to transport. Here we are in Birmingham, the third most congested city in the UK outside of London, according to the National Infrastructure Commission. And a city like many cities around the UK with some real challenges. So in terms of inequality, what do we mean? We mean that there's a gap in income between the richest people in the country and the poorest people in the country. We observe that there's a real difference between the quality of life, the health and the well being in the income, in terms of where people live in the country, and of course in terms of health, going back to that first statistic that I shared with you around the gap in life expectancy. There's a real difference between the places that people live and their health.#
And transport has a big impact on that, and how inequality affects transport can broadly be broken down in number of ways, but three of the most significant ways are around opportunities for employment, education, training. Your opportunities are dependent on your accessibility, the transport services you have and of course where you live. The access to transport that you've got and those travel choices, whether you are able to choose to walk, cycle, catch a public transport or travel by car, or whether car is your only option. And of course, your quality of life and the impact on your health from things like air quality. Not being able to walk or cycle was as part of your everyday travel can have detrimental effects.#
The costs, of course. One of the most widely observed indicators of inequality. We've heard from previous speakers that there are a large percentage of households that don't have access to a car. Indeed, 40% of the lowest-income households don't have access to a car, so are dependant for their access, and travel choices on alternatives such as walking, cycling or public transport. And low-income households. Yeah, they often spend a relatively large proportion of their income on commuting costs, mainly because they're having to choose public transport. And, of course, people living in rural areas often have few travel choices. There -as we will come on to in a minute- there is dwindling bus or rail services and the costs generally on the upwards trends. One interesting statistic here, I think, is that lower-income households indeed travel less. Households with no car make roughly 30% fewer trips. And cover almost 60% less trip distance than households with a car. That, of course, isn't always their choice, but it's their circumstance.#
So the costs again of different travel options. We have observed over the years that the costs of motoring that's the cost of buying a car, maintaining it, and the fuel has decreased over the last 10 years. And that's in real terms when you take into account fluctuating inflation costs, while costs of rail and bus travel having increased. So again a real impact on people of lower incomes and the poorest in our society. Partly due, this decreasing motoring costs to UK government freezing of fuel duty since 2011-2012. This has had a number of social impacts, including the cost to the Treasury in terms of income. More broadly fuel duty, UK fuel duty from petrol, the tax that is charged on petrol, is expected to raise £28.4 billion in this financial year. That's a considerable amount of money. With a move towards electric vehicles or alternatively fuelled vehicles, where is that - where is that income going to come from?#
And lastly, I just wanted to dwell a bit on the future of employment. So while we have a move towards electric vehicle sales, expected to rise significantly over the coming years, the electric car fleet makes up about half a percent of all registered cars on the road. That's dramatically expected to increase over over time. The opportunities to transform our workforce to make a world-leading low-carbon technology is many commentators and government expect to be significant. Automation and technology will bring significant change to the future of low and middle-skilled workers. And the changing (indecipherable) to our towns and cities is there, then moved and changed so that walking and cycling is much more of an option. Our cities are re-scaped, I think provides lots of opportunity for an increased labour force. So I think the evidence points towards a growing inequality in this country. But some real opportunities for the future in line with tackling climate change and decarbonising transport. Thank you very much.
Sarah: Great. So just a couple of minutes then, to write down your questions with Jason, a maximum of two questions per person, one question per post-it please.
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