This Clean Air Day (Thursday 17 June) the Confederation of Passenger Transport is calling on government to use a pro-public transport message that encourages people back on board buses and coaches to help improve air quality.
Clean Air Day UK, an annual campaign led by Global Action Plan, brings together individuals and organisations to improve public understanding of air pollution, build awareness of how air pollution affects our health, and explain the actions we can all take to tackle air pollution.
This year CPT will be highlighting how getting people out of their cars and onto buses and coaches is crucial to cleaning up the air we all breathe. To do this there must be messaging from government at a national level that promotes bus and coach travel as a safe, convenient, and appealing travel option.
CPT’s Head of Policy Alison Edwards said:
“We want to improve the quality of the air we all breathe but to do that we must have less reliance on privately-owned cars. Buses and coaches are among the cleanest, greenest vehicles on our roads however to fully play their part in improving the quality of the air we breathe we need to see more people choosing to travel by bus and coach.
“As we exit the pandemic, government must actively encourage and back industry efforts to get people back on board buses and coaches rather than travelling by car. Without a pro-public transport message from Government to help counteract some of the unhelpful messaging around public transport during the pandemic, we risk seeing continued reliance on the car, increasing air pollution and damaging our health.”
Longer-term measures that make catching the bus or coach an easy, reliable option must be implemented to support this messaging. This includes bus priority measures that keep buses out of traffic and ensuring that Clean Air Zone policies are fair on coaches and penalise car use instead.
Alison Edwards continued:
“Just one extra car journey per month by bus would result in a billion fewer car journeys each year, and a fully loaded coach can take up to 50 cars off our roads. We must see significant investment in bus priority measures and Clean Air Zones that are fair and reasonable for coaches and charge cars to enter them.”