Sep 21, 2012
Canberra Loves 40% today welcomed ACT Labor’s commitment to fund the first stage of Light Rail, and called for the Canberra Liberals to announce their position.
Light Rail within an integrated transport system is key part of reaching the 40% target and transforming Canberra into a cleaner, more livable city.
“This has been a central focus for us this election year, it’s exciting to see another of the major parties getting on board,” spokesperson Phoebe Howe said.
“Transport makes up nearly a quarter of our emissions, so making it easy for Canberrans to leave their car at home is central to reaching our 40% target. Light Rail and public transport also has a big impact on how we build our city to reduce our carbon footprint. The Light Rail project must go hand in hand with developing a truly sustainable city.”
The Government’s Action Plan 2, and the ACT Greens climate policy to reach our 40% emissions reduction target both require a significant increase in public transport use. Evidence from around Australia and the world show us that when Light Rail offers reliable, timely and convenient service it attracts people to leave their cars at home.
“Today’s announcement shows that our leaders are listening to what Canberrans want. Innovative investment harnesses the economic boost Light Rail brings to cities, it’s not just one big lump sum from the public purse. The ACT Greens have announced their own funding models, with the combined support and planning from all Territory parties we can invest wisely now and reap the benefits in years to come,” Ms Howe continued.
Canberra Loves 40% is now looking for promises to turn into action.
“The community want the constant call for Light Rail every election to stop, and the track laying to begin. The ACT Greens promise works to start in 2015, the Government says 2016. Canberrans will hold our leaders to account at the next election if we haven’t seen action.”
Canberra Loves 40% criticised the Canberra Liberals for their lack of vision following a disappointing silence on environmental and climate issues this election.
“So far all we have heard from the Liberals on transport is a 12-month trial of free shuttle buses and a vague mention of ‘looking at intelligent public transport systems’. It seems the Canberra Liberals want to lock us into a car-dependent future with their massive increase on roads spending. Canberrans know that more roads forces us to buy more cars, more cars mean bottlenecks and endless car parks, no matter how wide the parkways get. It’s time for our city to mature with a modern public transport system,” Ms Howe concluded.
The Opposition have not yet ruled out support for Light Rail.