The underlying thought has some merit here but once they worked out the cost they should have shot this dog. For they’re suggesting that people should be paid some £2,000 to £3,000 to not use a car for a year. To use public transport instead etc.
As an experiment? Well, why not? The why not being, well, what are these people thinking? There are 30 million households in the country. £2,000 a year each is £60 billion. Do we have a £60 billion problem here? Nope, we don’t. So, therefore, we shouldn’t be thinking nor even testing paying £60 billion to solve it:
Motorists will be paid up to £3,000 a year to ditch their cars under government-funded plans to cut congestion and air pollution.
Do note we’re not solving congestion nor air pollution. We’re cutting it. Buses, taxis, bicycles, all create both. So, we might, maybe, gain a reduction. At what cost?
Cash credits will be loaded on to a travel card and smartphone app to spend on public transport, car sharing or green hire schemes. Motorists will be expected to surrender their car for a period to test the amount of money needed to trigger a long-term change in travel habits.
Research showed that congestion cost the British economy almost £8 billion last year, with drivers stuck in traffic for the equivalent of 178 hours a year.
To spend 60 to save some portion of 8 is monstrous stupidity. And no, we can’t appeal to greenhouse gases. As Stern pointed out, that’s a £30 billion a year social cost. Spending 60 to shave some bit off 30 doesn’t work either.
Sure, the musing, well, if people used public transport a bit more, cars a little less, there’d be some change. That’s reasonable musing. Now, what is the cost to engender that change? Great, muse on.
Eh? It’s that much? Idiot idea, let’s go do something else.
But then when we start talking about the environment, climate change, these days we do seem to implement only the idiot ideas, don’t we?