Transport Scotland today released its summary National Statistics

Key points:

44.8 billion vehicle kilometres were travelled on Scotland’s roads in 2014, an increase of 2% over the year, 5% more than in 2004 and the highest recorded level.

30% of journeys to work were by public or active travel in 2014, down from 31% in 2004.

2.8 million motor vehicles were licensed in Scotland in 2014, increasing to its highest ever level.

There was a 9% increase in new vehicle registrations in 2014 compared to 2013; 241,000 in 2013, 262,000 in 2014. This was the highest number of new registrations in a single year since 2007

The proportion of Edinburgh residents cycling as their main mode of travel to work has increased from 4% to 11.8% over the last 10 years

Reacting to the statistics, air pollution campaigner for Friends of the Earth Scotland Emilia Hanna said,

“The statistics reveal that Scotland is motoring towards more air pollution and climate change. Only 30% of are Scots commuting to work by public transport, walking or cycling, the same level as ten years ago. Since 2009 the number of bus passengers has actually contracted by almost 10%.

“The Scottish Government last week passed a budget that commits less than 2% of transport cash to walking and cycling. This falls far short of what is required for the Government to deliver on its commitment to see 10% of journeys made by bike by 2020.

“Around 2500 people in Scotland die early from air pollution every year, and that traffic is the key cause. The next Scottish Government must introduce stronger measures to discourage people from using their car such as 20mph zones or congestion charging.
“It must commit to rolling out Low Emission Zones in each of our major cities by 2018, so that the most polluting vehicles are kept out of city centres. It must invest 10% of its transport budget on walking and cycling to give sustainable transport a chance to really thrive in Scotland.

On the success of Edinburgh in increasing cycling rates, Emilia Hanna concluded,
“Edinburgh Council has increased its spending on cycling dramatically and as a result the proportion of city residents cycling to work has increased from 4% to 11.8% over the last 10 years. The Government must follow suit.”

ENDS

 

Notes to Editors

The Transport Statistics can be viewed at http://www.transport.gov.scot/sites/default/files/documents/rrd_reports/…

FoES PR: “Budget Reaction: No New Money for Walking and Cycling” (24 February 2016) http://www.foe-scotland.org.uk/budget-reaction-2016

FoES PR: “New Research Means 2500 Deaths a Year in Scotland are from Air Pollution” (23 February 2016) http://www.foe-scotland.org.uk/RCP-Report

Friends of the Earth Scotland is:
* Scotland's leading environmental campaigning organisation
* An independent Scottish charity with a network of thousands of supporters and active local groups across Scotland
* Part of the largest grassroots environmental network in the world, uniting over 2 million supporters, 75 national member groups, and some 5,000 local activist groups.