Sat 23 Apr, 2016

By making cycling and walking the easy options we can cut air pollution and improve public health. Alison Johnstone

Ahead of attending today’s Pedal on Parliament protest, the Scottish Greens are highlighting their successes in getting cycling and walking infrastructure investment up the political agenda.


Alison Johnstone, Health and Sport spokesperson for the Scottish Greens and MSP candidate for Lothian, led the Scottish Parliament's first debate on cycling in 2012, set up the cross-party group on cycling and secured a cycle safety summit chaired by a government minister in light of a series of accidents and fatalities.


The Scottish Greens' Holyrood election manifesto includes a commitment to spend ten per cent of the transport budget on cycling and walking - the SNP has failed to spend even two per cent this way.


Alison, who will attend today's protest, said:


“We must see the proportion of the transport budget spent on cycling and walking rise to 10 per cent if we’re remotely serious about making Scotland a country where cycling is the norm for short journeys. By making cycling and walking the easy options we can cut air pollution and improve public health.


“Greens want to give communities control to decide which routes and road junctions should be priorities for repair and improvement, and we want 20mph speed limits rolled out in residential areas. I led Holyrood’s first debate on cycling, and parliament agreed that every child in Scotland should have the opportunity to undertake on-road cycle training. The SNP has cut funding for safe cycling and walking routes to schools, so the need for a bigger Green presence in parliament is clear if we want bold action to make cycling easy and enjoyable for all ages.”


Scottish Greens co-convener Patrick Harvie, the party’s economy spokesperson and MSP candidate for Glasgow, will also attend today’s protest. He said:


“Council budgets have been cut by the SNP in government. Under the Scottish Greens’ plans for income tax and replacing council tax we could raise additional revenue fairly to invest in local infrastructure improvements to support the many people who want to walk and cycle but are put off by congested and poorly maintained streets.


“Investing in cycle infrastructure and road maintenance is far better for local businesses and our economy than ploughing extra millions into massive new road projects. Research shows it creates far more job hours, so we should be focusing on fixing and improving what we’ve got rather than adding even further to the cost of maintaining our road network. Successive SNP and Labour-led governments have failed to act. We need a bolder Holyrood with more Green voices to get us on track.”

Get involved

More like this

£9 Million Byres Road Plans Risk a Missed Opportunity

Sun 27 May, 2018

Glasgow has outgrown the private car. The air we breathe is unsafe, our roads are crumbling under ever-increasing traffic volumes and our transport system is failing to address the needs of the half of households in the city without access to a car. Other parts of the city are benefiting from investment to make it easier for people of all ages and abilities to walk and cycle safely.

No Room for Excuses in Tackling Air Pollution

Mon 30 Apr, 2018

A Scottish Green Councillor has called for more ambition from Glasgow's decision makers in the implementation of low emission zones in the city.

Councillor Martha Wardrop told a public meeting that the Glasgow's poor air quality was a 'blight on the city'.

The gathering, organised by the city's Scottish Green Party branch, saw politicians and campaigners come together to discuss the ways that Glasgow's disgusting air quality can be improved.