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People call for convenient public transport

People call for convenient public transport - govt builds motorways

Green media release 20-2-08

A new Ministry for the Environment report shows that New Zealanders find sustainable transport options such as cycling and public transport are not convenient, and that is why they are continuing to use their cars.

So why, asks the Green Party, is the government focussed on making it easier to drive a car to work instead of putting our focus on improving sustainable transport?

"It is reassuring that the report finds the majority (53%) of New Zealanders are deeply concerned that we are not doing enough to protect the environment. We agree with them," says Dr. Russel Norman, Green Party Co-leader.

"But it also shows that only 22% of New Zealanders regularly use public transport and only 23% regularly have car-less days. This result reinforces the conclusion of Chapter 13 of the State of the Environment report that increased car use is one of the key drivers of environmental decline.

When asked why they weren't using sustainable transport options such as public transport, 39% said it was because of the inconvenience (time and 'hassle').

"This report shows that people want more convenient sustainable transport options. This means fast, cheap and comfortable public transport as well as safer cycling and walking.

"However the Government still prioritises spending on making it easier to drive a car to work, as witnessed by the billions being poured into new motorways. It is trying to improve the convenience of unsustainable transport options, the exact opposite of what this study says is needed.

"The report is welcome because it shows that most people want to make our environment better and are doing something about it. However, when it comes to transport, a move towards sustainability is dependent on the government making it easier to leave the car at home and the government still has its priorities back to front."


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