Tuesday 18 February 2020

MCC's Response to the Climate Emergency

The climate emergency requires us to act now, and we welcome Merton Council committing to making Merton carbon neutral by 2050. However, transport emissions have remained stubbornly high and must be reduced to tackle the Climate Crisis. Cycling is fast, cheap and is a near-zero-carbon alternative for many journeys but is unattractive to many potential users due to poor-quality infrastructure. Experience in Continental Europe is that cycling modal share is directly related to quality of cycle infrastructure. 

Whilst public transport and electrical vehicles (EV’s) have a part to play in decarbonization, it is difficult to imagine a credible climate action plan without a prominent role for cycling, as increasing cycling modal share is the quickest and cheapest way to decarbonize.  We have produced A Response to the Climate Emergency and submitted it to Merton Council’s Climate Emergency Working Group with both short and long term measures that we believe any credible response to the Climate Emergency Action Plan should incorporate and cycling is a key element of this. 

Saturday 15 February 2020

LIP Service?

To most people ‘lips’ are those bodily elements that crack open for a good laugh, but in the singular the LIP has quite serious connotations, particularly for those who cycle or fancy cycling - and especially those think that encouraging more people to cycle is crucial to taking action to tackle the climate emergency.

Merton Council’s ‘Local Implementation Plan’ sets out how the Council hopes to satisfy London’s Mayoral Transport Strategy in order that, the keeper of the purse, Transport for London (TfL), can cough up the cash for cycling infrastructure.

The London Borough of Merton’s LIP follows the Mayor’s advice in proposing a local cycle infrastructure plan and it picks up those Strategic areas and corridors currently prioritised for TfL funding. The extent of Merton’s cycling infrastructure plan means that, if implemented, everyone can have reasonable access to a satisfactory cycle route. An essential provision in zero emissions initiatives.

The problem is that the first financial year of LIP action (2019-2020) has, thus far, produced little in results. Nine of Merton's ten proposed actions have yet to show signs of any action at all.