I was prompted this morning, by an email from the organisation Fair Fuel UK, to write to my MP about the Low Emissions All-Party Parliamentary Group Inquiry. Naturally, I felt that this was too important an opportunity to miss, so I took their advice. Unfortunately, the standard message that they provided seemed rather poorly worded, so I replaced it with my own slightly edited version:
Dear David Crausby MP,
I welcome if you, as my MP, would please attend the July APPG Inquiry into Alternative Ways to Lower Vehicle Emissions and ask questions on my behalf.
I, and people I know, all want improved air quality, and it’s now time that the Government took seriously its responsibility for reducing dangerously poor air quality, noise, congestion, road danger, obesity and the huge cost to the NHS of inactivity-related ill-health, by reducing car dependence and helping people to shift to active travel modes such as walking and cycling.
The Government and many local authorities seem to want only to pay lip-service to the problems caused by massive car-dependence. Whilst the introduction of ultra-low emission zones, congestion charges, and removal of subsidised car parking are welcome, the necessary change will only occur if cycling and walking, as well as public transport, are made more pleasant and attractive. This needs to be coupled with measures that prioritise these sustainable modes of transport over wasteful, inefficient private car use.
This APPG inquiry, as I understand from FairFuelUK, will demand that the Government investigate several alternative workable solutions to lower emissions. Proven ways that are here now, cost effective and in use elsewhere in the world. In particular, I would urge the inquiry to look to places such as the Netherlands, Copenhagen, Seville, and New York City to see what can be achieved when the priorities are set appropriately. These priorities will significantly improve air quality, be much fairer to millions of people and will free up road space for those journeys that absolutely have to be made by motor vehicle, such as emergency services. Please support their implementation.
Why is the Government disregarding these methods and still favouring heavily subsidised private car use? Please ask this question on my behalf at the APPG or i’d appreciate that you at least send a representative of your office to do so.
I hope you will attend these important meetings and ask questions on my behalf. Here are the dates of these meetings:
2nd July – Evidence Group 1 – evidence from suppliers of alternative solutions – 1.30pm Committee Rm 17
9th July – Evidence Group 2 – evidence from the supply chain – 1.30pm Committee Rm 17
16th July – Evidence Group 3 – evidence from policy makers/associations – 1.30pm Committee Rm 17
Please support and acknowledge this important one of APPG’s aims to help myself and your constituents. Thank you for your time and consideration.
Your Sincerely, etc.
The site says that the message will be reviewed before being forwarded to my MP, so I took the precaution of sending a copy directly from my own email account just in case they inadvertently mislaid it.
I would encourage anyone else interested in promoting active and sustainable travel to write to their MP. Please feel free to use my message as a template and improve upon it if you wish.