Scottish Greens Party spokesperson on Infrastructure and Investment and MSP candidate for South of Scotland, Sarah Beattie-Smith, has today called for a bolder commitment to clean, affordable transport from the Scottish Government. 

National transport figures released today have reveled that the number of vehicles is now the highest ever in Scotland, and that a total of 44.8 billion vehicle kilometres were travelled on Scotland's roads, an increase of 2% over the year.

Statistics also showed that that airport passenger numbers have increased by 3.6 per cent in 2014, and by 15 per cent since 2010, despite the Scottish Government arguing that the Air Passenger Duty (APD) ought to be scrapped in order to boost air traffic.

Beattie-Smith argued that short-sighted Government policies have meant that investment isn't being chanelled to improve  that would significantly improve people's lives, such as active travel and public transport.

The Scottish Greens have been pushing the Scottish Government to commit at least 10% of the transport budget to active travel and to increase investment in public transport. The Green MSPs Alison Johnstone and Patrick Harvie have also opposed the proposal to scrap the APD.  

Sarah said:

“Year after year, the Scottish Government has shied away from the bold action on transport that Scotland desperately needs. Instead, they’ve focused on short-term and short-sighted policies that benefit the few, not the many. 

"The new figures show that scrapping the Air Passenger Duty is simply an unnecessary giveaway to the enormously wealthy aviation industry. It’s just not good enough to talk about the dangers of climate change while at the same time giving tax breaks to an industry that’s pushing us closer to devastating climate change.

"The Scottish Green Party has consistently called for meaningful investment in our public transport infrastructure so that people across Scotland can benefit from affordable, accessible and reliable public transport instead of being forced to take the car or being excluded from society. Low-cost, low-carbon transport such as walking and cycling also deserves much stronger investment for the benefit of our health and our environment."