Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search

 

More political action needed to solve road congestion in NZ

Less talk and more political action needed to solve road congestion in NZ

Wellington (5 November 2019): Bold policy changes in the form of congestion pricing, which charges drivers higher road user rates at peak times in overcrowded routes, can solve New Zealand’s shocking congestion problems, says a new report from The New Zealand Initiative.

The Price is Right: The road to a better transport system provides compelling evidence that without proper road user pricing, congestion will continue to increase in our urban centres. Government forecasts shows New Zealand’s total vehicle kilometres travelled might increase by as much as 66% by 2040.

“Introducing congestion charges can encourage commuters to find trip alternatives, such as other travel times, routes and transport modes. That would reduce the overuse of road services at peak times,” says report author Dr Patrick Carvalho.

“In return, to avoid congestion charges becoming ‘just another tax’, commuters should expect the government to commit to a revenue-neutral system – where every net dollar raised through congestion charges would be offset by, say, a dollar less through property rate collection or lower fuel prices.

“Variable peak and off-peak rates are already part of our daily lives, from electricity bills and cinema tickets to hotel rates and public transport fares. Why should it be any different with car use?

“In a sense, we are already paying for congestion through hours wasted idling in commutes every week. Instead of Soviet-style rationing of road space by widespread queuing, congestion charges would harness the power of markets to solve our daily, and costly, road bottlenecks,” says Dr Carvalho.

Congestion pricing is not a new concept, with close to 100 years of academic research backing it, and plenty of international case studies validating it. In New Zealand, politicians across the spectrum are in favour of congestion charges, and both the Tax Working Group and the Productivity Commission have proposed congestion charges as an efficient way to modify behaviour and improve environmental quality.

International research also shows that the majority of road users are better off with the implementation of congestion charges, with lower socioeconomic groups usually benefitting the most. Tellingly, follow-up surveys demonstrate that the initial public scepticism is significantly reduced after the implementation of congestion charges. As congestion on the roads reduces, commuters become more receptive of proper pricing for road use.

New Zealand is well-placed to implement a comprehensive, world-class road pricing system. As an island economy with a unitary government, we do not face the same regulatory hurdles as, for example, the US or the European Union.

A copy of The Price is Right: The road to a better transport system, and a report summary are attached at the bottom of this page.

About The New Zealand Initiative
The New Zealand Initiative is an evidence-based think tank and research institute contributing to public policy discussion.

Supported by the nation’s leading visionaries, business leaders and political thinkers, we are committed to making New Zealand a better country for all its citizens with a world-class education system, affordable housing, a healthy environment, sound public finances and a stable currency.

www.nzinitiative.org.nz | Subscribe to Insights, our weekly newsletter


Attachments: The_Price_is_Right_The_road_to_a_better_transport_system.pdf
Report_summary_The_Price_is_Right-1.pdf

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines


Gordon Campbell: On Australia's Superior Ways Of Communicating About Its Vaccine Rollout

It isn’t only on the cricket field that Australia performs better. The clarity and degree of detail in Australia’s published schedule of the priorities for its vaccine rollout has been very impressive. Here for instance, is their initial “1a” top priority category: Quarantine and border workers, including: staff at entry points to the country (such as sea ports and land borders)... More>>


 

Joint Press Release: Dirty PR Exposed In Whale Oil Defamation Trial

Three public health advocates are relieved that their long-standing Whale Oil defamation trial against Cameron Slater, Carrick Graham, Katherine Rich and the Food and Grocery Council has finally concluded and they are pleased that the truth has come out... More>>

ALSO:


Government: Next Stage Of COVID-19 Support For Business And Workers

The Government has confirmed details of COVID-19 support for business and workers following the increased alert levels due to a resurgence of the virus over the weekend... More>>

ALSO:




Government: PHARMAC Review Announced

The Government is following through on an election promise to conduct an independent review into PHARMAC, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern and Health Minister Andrew Little announced today... More>>

ALSO:



Government: Balanced Economic Approach Reflected In Crown Accounts

New Zealand’s economic recovery has again been reflected in the Government’s books, which are in better shape than expected.
The Crown accounts for the seven months to the end of January 2021 were better than forecast in the Half Year Economic and Fiscal Update (HYEFU)... More>>


Covid-19: Auckland Back To Alert Level Three After One New Community Case Revealed

Auckland will move to alert level three for a week at 6am tomorrow morning after two new Covid-19 community cases announced this evening could not be directly linked to earlier cases, the Prime Minister has confirmed.
The rest of the country will move to level two.... More>>

NZ Initiative: New Report Highlights How Our Housing Crisis Could Worsen If We Don’t Act Now

If New Zealand politicians thought the housing crisis in 2020 was bad, the worst is yet to come, warns a new report by The New Zealand Initiative. In The Need to Build: The demographic drivers of housing demand , Research Assistant Leonard Hong ... More>>

Parliament: Kiwi MPs Among The “Most Educated In The World”

New analysis of MP qualifications reveals New Zealand’s Parliament is one of the most educated and highest qualified in the world, and significantly more educated than Australia’s. The research, by Mark Blackham of BlacklandPR and Geoffrey Miller ... More>>

 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels