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Author Topic: Climate Change Emergency - Implications for UK Transport Strategy  (Read 7858 times)
broadgage
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« Reply #75 on: October 15, 2019, 11:04:16 pm »

Whilst I have considerable sympathy for most of the views and concerns of Extinction Rebellion, they are IMHO being increasingly hijacked by a somewhat nutty crowd who oppose almost everything, including HS2, and who join whatever protest is available.

And yes, the amount of non bio-degradable rubbish left behind is most regrettable.
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A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
TonyK
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« Reply #76 on: October 16, 2019, 12:15:29 am »

Far from Bristol blocking expansion, I thought Bristol, along with South Glos and WECA overall, was in favour of it. It's only North Somerset against it, and they're the ones who get to take the decision. I'm pretty sure they'll go along with their neighbours' wishes. We'll see.

I'm not sure North Somerset is against the expansion, given the business rates they must be raking in. Bath and North East Somerset clearly favour their citizens heading east, to fly from Gatwick or Heathrow. You can take expert reports at face value, but the one underpinning Bristol Airport's expansion plan shows a considerable saving in CO2 emissions by reducing private travel to get to the aircraft. I found report in the Post of planned new bus services to the airport to link Yatton and Nailsea and Backwell stations. I shan't quote it all, but towards the end, a spokesman said (my emphasis):
Quote
We are committed to exploring new public transport alternatives where these are economically viable.

The Bristol Flyer started life as a minibus when the service commenced and has grown in popularity to the extent that in 2018 over 800,000 journeys were made. We’re hopeful the trials will be as successful.

The Nailsea and Clevedon on demand public transport service forms part of a multi-million pound package to help cut Co2 emissions created by an extra two million people using the airport.

I remember that minibus, and the later low frequency single-decker, both of which my wife and I had to ourselves on occasion. It is now 6 double deck buses per hour between 6am and 7pm, and 3 bph outside that for much of the rest of the day, with an hourly service from 1.20 to 4.20 am. It has to be about the best served destination by bus in the area, and it is heavily used. If you didn't know, online tickets are £11.00 return, including a bus to and from the airport bus stop in town. I can see  the new services being fairly well used once established.

Whilst I have considerable sympathy for most of the views and concerns of Extinction Rebellion, they are IMHO being increasingly hijacked by a somewhat nutty crowd who oppose almost everything, including HS2, and who join whatever protest is available.

And yes, the amount of non bio-degradable rubbish left behind is most regrettable.

Hijacked or not, the manifesto I read at the time of the Bristol protests in the summer called for alternatives to domestic flights, and the abolition of the planned alternative. It wasn't the only example of non-joined up thinking.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2019, 12:35:36 am by TonyK » Logged

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« Reply #77 on: October 16, 2019, 09:35:29 am »

The Bristol Flyer may be convenient for passengers, but I wonder what public transport options are available for airport workers and flight crew, who presumably don't all live in a straight line between the airport and the city centre, but come from surrounding towns and villager.  Given the huge number of flights that take off between 6 and 8am, how many have a sensible and reliable public transport service that will get them to work for 4am, when all the check in facilities and shops open up? I bet 99% drive.
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Bmblbzzz
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« Reply #78 on: October 16, 2019, 09:46:17 am »

The Flyer's been a single-decker every time I've used it, but I haven't used it for a few years so it might be double-decker now. Anyway, the increase in bus services to the airport is no surprise given the increase in plane service from it.

As for HS2, I think if it were a case of being given £nbn to do whatever is best for railways, HS2 would not be the answer. But as that's never been the question, that's no reason to scrap it.
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TonyK
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« Reply #79 on: October 16, 2019, 10:11:55 am »

The Bristol Flyer may be convenient for passengers, but I wonder what public transport options are available for airport workers and flight crew, who presumably don't all live in a straight line between the airport and the city centre, but come from surrounding towns and villager.  Given the huge number of flights that take off between 6 and 8am, how many have a sensible and reliable public transport service that will get them to work for 4am, when all the check in facilities and shops open up? I bet 99% drive.

They will have more options when the new services open! The exisiting A1 and A2 buses are well used by people who work at the airport, and by crew of aircraft based there. I am guessing they don't pay the full fare, or have a season deal. There was something of a rumpus when it was announced that all airport buses would go via the pointless guided bus route to beef up the numbers, as either many people living around the Chessels area had got jobs at the airport, or many people with jobs at the airport had bought houses at the Chessels. Which shows how employment follows transport. As there is a round-the-clock service, I am sure there are many who drive to work, and some who drive to a bus stop, a bone of contention along many routes.
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SandTEngineer
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« Reply #80 on: October 19, 2019, 10:26:16 am »

You couldn't make it up.....https://www.itv.com/news/2019-10-19/shapps-wants-earlier-extinction-of-diesel-trains/

Quote
The phasing out of diesel trains from Britain’s railways could be intensified as part of the Government’s bid to cut carbon emissions.

Transport Secretary Grant Shapps told MPs he is “hugely concerned” that the current policy means diesel trains will continue to operate until 2040.

Earlier this month, he pledged to “thoroughly explore” the case for bringing forward the date for banning the sale of conventionally-fuelled new cars by five years.

Giving evidence to the Commons Transport Select Committee on Wednesday, he said: “I’m also hugely concerned about the idea that we could still have new partially diesel-run trains up to 2040.

“When I look at my comments on cars, where at the moment the policy is 2040 to end the sale of petrol and diesel but I recently said that I’m going to investigate (bringing this forward to) 2035, I also am of course very interested in the earlier extinction of diesel trains.”

An estimated 29% of Britain’s rail fleet is solely diesel-powered.

In February 2018, then-rail minister Jo Johnson announced that he wanted all of these trains to be replaced by 2040.

Mr Shapps’ comments suggest the Government may also ban bi-mode trains – which can be powered by diesel or electricity.

His predecessor, Chris Grayling, heralded bi-mode trains as a way of delivering almost identical passenger benefits as electrifying lines, without the need to carry out the “disruptive” work.

Mr Grayling received widespread criticism in July 2017 when electrification projects in Wales, the Midlands and the North were axed or downgraded.

An investigation by the Rail Industry Decarbonisation Task Force found there are “real possibilities” for some journeys to be made by trains powered by hydrogen fuel cells or batteries, such as local trains that make frequent stops.

But it warned that for high-speed intercity and freight services there are “no suitable alternatives to electric and diesel traction” that will be developed by 2040.

Electric trains have been estimated to cut carbon emissions by 20-35% compared with diesel trains, but only 42% of Britain’s rail track is electrified.

Sim Harris, managing editor of industry newspaper Railnews, claimed that starting a rolling programme of electrification works is the only way to bring forward the phasing out of diesel trains.

“If they don’t do it then I’m afraid Mr Shapps’ ambitions just don’t work,” he told the PA news agency.

“New technologies can emerge and they may do so, but I think stopping the electrification programme on the very spurious grounds that it avoided disruption was a foolish thing to do, particularly in light of the environmental difficulties.”
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grahame
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« Reply #81 on: October 19, 2019, 11:37:19 am »

Question and answer I heard the other day ....

"Why does electrification carry on / cost so much less in Scotland than in England"

"Because in Scotland they have a rolling program so that as one line's completed the team moves on to the next, but in England and Wales, the team will be broken up and all move on to new jobs when they reach Cardiff and a new team will need to be built for .... [further projects]"

"Because the lines in England / Wales are for higher speed operation and need more expensive engineering"

At TravelWatch SouthWest yesterday, the question was asked as to why we still have an electric train desert in Devon and Cornwall, especially when electricity might make a significant difference over the banks ... and as I recall, some of those lines are not going to be any faster that the ones they're busy with in Scotland.  If electric trains can reach North Berwick, why can't they reach Falmouth Docks?
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« Reply #82 on: October 19, 2019, 12:33:04 pm »

It would be absolutely criminal if the current team working on electrifying the line to Cardiff having mastered the skills of electrification were to be broken up.

For me the first priority would be to return to Didcot and electrify the line to Oxford having done extensive work at Oxford to enable electrification to happen to Oxford. Following on from there Chippenham/Bristol Parkway-Bristol Temple Meads.

Electrification must now once again be restored as a number one priority for government. To have trains that can run on electricity continuing to run on diesel for substantial distances on the GWML long into the future to me seems crazy and poor short term thinking from the Dft under the previous Transport Secretary.
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« Reply #83 on: October 19, 2019, 12:58:45 pm »

To be honest I think Grant’s predecessor was under pressure to react to the huge cost increase and delay to the GWML project and Grant himself (with that scheme virtually finished and starting to be forgotten) is now under pressure to be seen to be more environmentally responsible as that is currently trendy and likely to become trendier.

As ever, actions will speak louder than words.
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« Reply #84 on: October 20, 2019, 12:46:34 am »

It would be absolutely criminal if the current team working on electrifying the line to Cardiff having mastered the skills of electrification were to be broken up.

For me the first priority would be to return to Didcot and electrify the line to Oxford having done extensive work at Oxford to enable electrification to happen to Oxford. Following on from there Chippenham/Bristol Parkway-Bristol Temple Meads.

Electrification must now once again be restored as a number one priority for government. To have trains that can run on electricity continuing to run on diesel for substantial distances on the GWML long into the future to me seems crazy and poor short term thinking from the Dft under the previous Transport Secretary.
I'm not sure using those massive structures can really be described as having 'mastered' electrification but other than that I agree with you. Given that the fleet was going to be to some extent bi-mode anyway, there was some logic in postponing the electrification to Bristol and Oxford to allow remodelling to take place first (is that completed at Oxford now?) to avoid having to move recently installed electrification structures. But work on stretches of plain line on Didcot-Oxford and Chippenham - Bristol Temple Meads - Bristol Parkway that are not subject to the remodelling projects should be started as soon as the wires to Cardiff are completed.

Unfortunately a sensible outcome requires joined-up thinking that is very difficult with our fragmented railway system. I feel that new orders for diesel-only trains should be banned immediately, along with bi-modes capable of over 110mph. However, to avoid blocking capacity increases for unelectrified areas (eg. CrossCountry) there needs to be flexibility to move stock between train operators as electrification spreads. Wires to Oxford, Bristol Sheffield and Nottingham could release bi-modes for CrossCountry to use, but there needs to be a way of moving the bi-mode stock before the current lease expires. A well-planned electrification and rolling stock cascade programme is the only way to avoid either scrapping relatively new diesel trains (or at least the powerpacks themselves) after very little use or continuing to use diesel trains beyond the net zero deadline.
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grahame
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« Reply #85 on: October 20, 2019, 07:50:21 am »

I feel that new orders for diesel-only trains should be banned immediately, along with bi-modes capable of over 110mph. However ...

Maybe.   But are you condemning unelectified regions such as the South West peninsular and South West Wales to running on a fleet of trains that will become progressively older?  Which are so far from any overhead electrics that their whole local of regional routes have to be covered with self-powered trains?

A very interesting discussion as a small group of us chewed over a barbie yesterday ( the thunderstorms forecast having not appeared ) on the through of using lightweight (almost tramway) electrification for a low cost solution on branches that will always be lower speed.  Windsor, Marlow, Henley-on-Thames, Severn Beach, Exmouth, Gunnislake, Looe, Newquay and St. Ives, perhaps?   Starting (o tackling the issue) from the "other end" of heavy main line stuff. Perhaps short dead sections under bridges with trains coasting, with an emergency battery to cover the odd half mile?
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TaplowGreen
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« Reply #86 on: October 20, 2019, 08:37:46 am »

I feel that new orders for diesel-only trains should be banned immediately, along with bi-modes capable of over 110mph. However ...



A very interesting discussion as a small group of us chewed over a barbie yesterday 

Not very environmentally friendly  Wink
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ellendune
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« Reply #87 on: October 20, 2019, 01:23:24 pm »

Whilst I have considerable sympathy for most of the views and concerns of Extinction Rebellion, they are IMHO being increasingly hijacked by a somewhat nutty crowd who oppose almost everything, including HS2, and who join whatever protest is available.

And yes, the amount of non bio-degradable rubbish left behind is most regrettable.


In the Observer today:

Quote
Tube protest was a mistake, admit leading Extinction Rebellion members

Senior figures in Extinction Rebellion (XR) admit it was a mistake to target London’s public transport network at rush hour, a move that has split opinion within the movement. Future strategy is now being reassessed, they say.
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grahame
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« Reply #88 on: October 20, 2019, 02:15:43 pm »

In the Observer today:

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Tube protest was a mistake, admit leading Extinction Rebellion members

Senior figures in Extinction Rebellion (XR) admit it was a mistake to target London’s public transport network at rush hour, a move that has split opinion within the movement. Future strategy is now being reassessed, they say.

It is a significant issue for many groups to keep / help keep everyone "on message" / on policy, and also for the leaders of such groups - who may be very new to this sort of thing - to make good and brave decisions that turn out to be the right ones.  Good and correct to look back at actions / strategy and to reassess.

Examples ...

1.

Something as simple as a timetable leaflet / line guide that Lisa and I have been composing over the last week. And differences of view as to some of the detail that should go on there, and what the primary intent of the leaflet is.  I think we are there now - there's a proof copy out for people to sign off on, but had we not been careful the headline would have been the green and political correctness agendae rather than "here are you trains and this is where they go" with a strong subtext of "they will work well for you AND you can feel good about using them because they have a better CO2 footprint than your private car alternative".

2.

Nearly 7 years ago (goodness!), Lisa and I appeared on a competitive (reality?) TV show.   At recording, we took personal flack from one of the other pairs appearing to the extent that a third pair jumped in and stood up for us - going far further than we would or could have done.  Then after transmission a small number of people that we know - and some more viewers who we didn't know at all -  got so incensed on our behalf that they also followed up in ways we would not have done.   Some were fine but some were just borderline acceptable, and others (not from people we knew, that goodness) overstepped the mark and were nasty / silly to the extent I'll say "not in my name you don't" - but you can't say that until the damage is done.

3.

There's a particular issue at a organisation I'm with looking to help promote the future development and use of rail routes and travel across the UK.  The official / mainstream approach is to back change that is in well thought out cases, well supported, and has within its case the economics and the effects on others well considered.  The organisation has quite a number of real experts and thinkers who do a sterling job, much of that of necessity behind the scenes.  But there are other have their views - projects which have unanswered elephants in the room so huge they make the whole project look like a joke, projects which rob Peter of £1000 to pay Paul £10, and projects that call for a return of the good old times before Dr Beeching but which really don't add up these days.  You can learn from the doctor, and learn well, but you need a rail system for the future.   The challenge here is to maintain / develop the good name of the organisation through excellence and guide work, with minimal resources, and be able to address any non-aligned publicity from people who associate the ideas they publicise with the organisation, saying "I am a member of" and having it picked up by the recipient of the publicity as "I represent".

A long post ... I look and wonder at the mechanisms at TravelWatch SouthWest, and at how we do things here on the Great Western Coffee Shop, and I look to analyse why such issues are not a frequent concern at either organisation.
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broadgage
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« Reply #89 on: October 20, 2019, 02:53:47 pm »

GW electrification has turned into an expensive and vote loosing fiasco, but despite this I still a firm believer in electrification, hopefully costs and time frames will improve with experience.
I agree with the suggestion regarding low bridges, that a dead section of "false" overhead should be installed and the train should coast through such short sections.
IMHO, ALL new electric trains should be equipped with limited diesel or battery power for when the wires come down. Sufficient to operate hotel power for a couple of hours, and to proceed at much reduced speed for a few dozen miles.

I do not believe that any more 100% diesel powered passenger trains should be built unless some exceptional need can be demonstrated, that cant be met by existing stock, modified if need be.
It might be decades until some branch lines are electrified, but such lines could use ex main line stock. Old need not mean inferior.
I see no fundamental reason for example why voyagers cant be used for another twenty years on a branch line, having been displaced by new electric units from the routes that they operate at present.
Even IETs might see a second life on a branch line in 25 years time.
« Last Edit: October 20, 2019, 04:15:35 pm by broadgage » Logged

A proper intercity train has a minimum of 8 coaches, gangwayed throughout, with first at one end, and a full sized buffet car between first and standard.
It has space for cycles, surfboards,luggage etc.
A 5 car DMU is not a proper inter-city train. The 5+5 and 9 car DMUs are almost as bad.
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