Policy Scan

Sustrans Policy Scan is a regular summary of key policy thinking, reports, announcements and consultations:

Sustrans says: Sustrans press comments, reports and campaigns relating to policy

Key developments: Relevant government and other organisations’ policy/reports/campaigns

Consultations and inquiries: Sustrans' responses and upcoming consultations


Latest Policy Scan - July 2018 (pdf)


Sustrans says

A selection of our articles, blog posts and news.

Working together to move the nation - a new manifesto for walking and cycling (28/08/18) A group of the UK’s leading walking and cycling organisations has launched Moving the Nation, a manifesto to prioritise walking and cycling in the UK. Actions for Government include lowering default speed limits to 20mph for most roads in built up areas and 40mph for the most minor rural roads to make our roads and streets safer for everyone, and prohibiting pavement parking to create safer and more accessible streets.

Have your say on Bristol City Council's 20mph speed limits review (26/06/18) A review of 20mph speed limits is currently underway to assess how well it is working in communities across the city – and you can have your say.  James Cleeton, England Director South, said that Sustrans fundamentally supports 20mph speed limits and the efficacy slower, safer speed limits bring to the city and to vulnerable road users”.

Sustrans comments on Westminster Cycle Superhighway legal challenge (18/06/18) Westminster City Council has issued a claim for Judicial Review of Cycle Superhighway 11 that could see the scheme stopped.  Responding to the news, Ben Addy, Head of Collaborative Design for Sustrans in London, said:  “Westminster Council’s decision to take the scheme to judicial review is deeply disappointing for hopes of safer cycling and walking in central London.  The council appear to have made a decision based on unfounded fears rather than clear evidence.”

Let’s clear the air about cars (21/06/18) Air pollution is now considered a 'public health crisis'. If cars create air pollution, let’s make cars cleaner? Problem solved? No. Electric Vehicles (EVs) have been hailed as sustainable form of transport and a silver bullet for air pollution, not just by government but also environmental charities like WWF. This ignores particulate matter contributing approximately 45% of pollutants. Steve Brooks, Director for Sustrans Cymru advises the starting point has to be fewer cars not newer cars.

Key developments

Greater Manchester announces plans for ‘Beelines’ – the UK’s largest cycling and walking network (27/06/18) Chris Boardman, Greater Manchester’s Cycling and Walking Commissioner, has unveiled an innovative new plan to create a city-region-wide cycling and walking network made up of more than 1,000 miles of routes, including 75 miles of Dutch-style segregated bike lanes.  The ‘Beelines’ network will be the largest joined-up system of walking and cycling routes in the UK and has been developed with all 10 Greater Manchester local authorities.

Government focus on cycling awareness and training in boost to cycle safety (29/06/18) Driving instructors will be offered bespoke training to ensure cyclists’ safety is at the forefront of their minds when they teach new drivers, in a pilot initiative launched by Cycling Minister Jesse Norman.  Alongside this training – backed by up to half a million pounds of funding – the government is also launching a new UK-wide initiative to help the police crackdown on the dangerous practice of ‘close passing’.

Britain’s potential cyclists put off cycling due to traffic conditions and potholes (31/05/18) A poll carried out for Cycling UK has revealed that the state of Britain’s roads and having to share the road with lorries and other large vehicles, are the biggest factors stopping more people taking up cycling in the UK. 

Transport Scotland - Active Travel Task Force Report (06/06/18) The Active Travel Task Force report is a result of oral and written evidence presented to the Task Force Members during 2017. It makes recommendations on how to tackle the barriers to delivering new, innovative and popular infrastructure which encourages walking and cycling.

Decarbonising Transport in Wales (26/06/18) This report from the Institute of Welsh Affairs highlights opportunities that could significantly improve and decarbonise the transport sector in Wales.

Active Travel: Solutions for changing cities (27/06/18) The Urban Transport Group has released a new report taking a detailed look at how active travel schemes can transform cities for the better.

World Health Organisation launches Global Action Plan on Physical Activity (04/06/18) “WHO Global action plan on physical activity and health 2018-2030: More active people for a healthier world.” Regular physical activity is proven to help prevent and treat no communicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and breast and colon cancer. It also helps prevent hypertension, overweight and obesity and can improve mental health, quality of life and well-being. Yet, much of the world is becoming less active.

The 2016 global and national burden of diabetes mellitus attributable to PM2·5 air pollution (01/07/18) Global study making the links between the air pollution emitted by cars and trucks and type 2 diabetes.

Stressing the harms of physical inactivity to promote exercise (25/05/18) The latest Essential Evidence series by Dr Adrian Davis explores how inactive people are contributing to a premature death burden as large as tobacco smoking.

Consortium to roll-out ‘hyperlocal’ air quality network in London (22/06/18) A consortium of academics and technology specialists is to rollout a network of 100 multi-parameter AQMesh air monitors in London as part of a project to improve data capture on the capital’s air pollution.  And starting in July 2018 two Google Street View cars will be used to map air pollution ‘at an unprecedented level of detail’ within the capital.

Atmosphere: Towards a proper strategy for tackling Greater Manchester’s air pollution crisis (14/06/18) IPPR (the Institute for Public Policy Research) reports: the levels of air pollution in Greater Manchester are lethal and illegal.  In ground-breaking new analysis, King’s College London (KCL) has estimated that 1.6 million life years will be lost in Greater Manchester in the coming century due to its poisonous air. This is equivalent to each of us having our life expectancy reduced by six months.

Speed restrictions to come into force to improve air quality and save lives in Wales (15/06/18) From 18 June, temporary 50 mph speed limits and other measures are being introduced at five locations on Welsh roads to improve air quality and save lives. The measures are aimed at reducing levels of nitrogen dioxide where emissions have been found to exceed legal limits.

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