Transport & Air Pollution
Transport is Scotland’s biggest source of climate emissions and the primary source of air pollution, which leads to 2,500 premature deaths in Scotland every year.
We need a decent public transport system that everyone can afford, and for people to feel safer walking and cycling so that fewer of us are using cars to get around.
By shifting the focus of planning and public spending towards public transport, walking and cycling we'll improve our health, climate and tackle social inequality.
Our transport system needs to change
Our current transport system isn’t working for us. Our “car is king” mentality means that driving is often the only option for people, leaving those without a car behind and causing dangerous levels of air pollution and carbon emissions in the process.
Making transport work for everyone
Public transport should be for everyone. This means making them free for all, but also bringing buses back into public ownership so services are run where people need them, not just where bus companies can make the most profit.
We need councils to build safe cycling networks, so people are confident in using their bikes to get around. And communities must take the lead in the transition away from our car-dominated system, so that what replaces it works for all of Scotland.
What we are doing
- Pushing the Scottish Government to take stronger action to meet its climate goals
- Researching the best solutions for creating a transport system that works for everyone
- Supporting community groups to create change in their area
- Increasing awareness of the environmental, health and social problems caused by the current transport system.
- We helped push the Scottish Government into commiting to reduce car travel by 20% by 2030
- Low Emission Zones are being introduced in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee
- Councils have new powers to start publicly-owned bus companies
- The active travel budget will be increased to 10% of the Government’s overall transport budget by 2024.
We need to start thinking of public transport as an essential service, like education or health. It should be available to everyone and free at the point of use. This is the only way we can tackle the climate crisis, air pollution and the inequality being caused by the current system.Gavin Thomson, Transport Campaigner
22,000 jobs: Investing in public transport
If we make public transport cheaper than cars, we can create jobs, strengthen our economy and meet our climate commitments.
Glasgow’s Low Emission Zone is coming
Glasgow’s Low Emission Zone coming into force is a big campaign win. Find out about how it will work to reduce air pollution in the city.
The most polluted streets in Scotland in 2022
Every January, we look at air pollution data for the previous year to find the most polluted streets, and this year we have some good news: Scotland did not breach legal air pollution limits in 2022.
Latest Press Releases
Campaigners, parents & pollution experts highlight benefits LEZ will bring
As Glasgow’s Low Emission Zone is due to start in a month’s time, campaigners highlight how it will clean up toxic air.
Opportunity for 22,000 more jobs in public transport
New research has found that 22,000 jobs could be directly created in Scotland by investing in public transport, plus hundreds of thousands more indirectly in areas like manufacturing and infrastructure construction.
Scotland meets air pollution limits thanks to clean air zones
It’s been revealed that Scotland did not breach legal air pollution limits in 2022 for the first time, excluding the impact of lockdowns in 2020.
Report: On the Move – Investing in public transport
This report looks at the level of investment that is needed in public transport to meet our climate targets and create jobs.
Community Bus Fund Briefing
National Planning Framework 4 Consultation Response
A manifesto for local authorities – 2022 Council Elections
This manifesto sets out some of the priorities for action that parties should champion in their manifestos, and the policies that should be taken to deliver them.
Briefing on the 20% car km reduction consultation
National Planning Framework 4 Position Statement response
We need better buses
An affordable, accessible bus network will lead to less car travel, and so lower pollution and climate emissions. Buses are vital for the future of our transport system. But the current system doesn’t deliver for passengers.
Walking and Cycling
Travelling by walking and cycling means reduced pollution and carbon emissions, and brings benefits for our physical and mental health.
What is a Low Emission Zone?
Low Emission Zones (LEZs) are areas in town or city centres where the most polluting vehicles are restricted from entering.
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