TEPR Projects: Railways and the environment
Rail is often cited as a more sustainable mode of transport compared to say, road transport, particularly in terms of its environmental performance. While rail has the potential to be more efficient than road in moving large numbers of people – and large amounts of certain types of freight – around, it still has adverse environmental impacts that need to be recognised and reduced, where possible.
As a result, the policy framework needs to ensure that rail plays an appropriate role in a sustainable transport system, and that its environmental impacts are reduced. This can include supporting the development of the rail sector as a result of its potential benefits for the environment, as well as also ensuring that the development and operation of rail transport is undertaken in a way that reduces its environmental impact.
TEPR has worked on the following reports relating to improving the (environmental) performance of rail transport:
Prior to forming TEPR, Ian Skinner was involved in a couple of projects that aimed to set out the way in which rail can be part of a sustainable transport system:
- Railways and the environment: Towards a strategy for 2005 and beyond, which was undertaken for the UK’s Strategic Rail Authority. This report provided an overview of the environmental issues that were relevant to the rail sector in the UK, followed by an overview of policy issues and other considerations that needed to be considered by the rail sector in order to improve its environmental performance.
- The sustainable case for rail, which was a position paper produced for a UK parliamentary seminar organised by the RMT, the UK’s rail trade union. The report provided an overview of the environmental impacts associated with rail transport, and underlined that there was a case to be made for supporting rail on the basis of its actual and potential environmental benefits.