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Sustainable travel and homeworking key to a fair, low-carbon Corona Recovery

Published 29 June 2020 by Transform Scotland

We have today submitted our evidence to the Economy, Energy and Fair Work Committee’s inquiry into the impact of COVID-19 on businesses, workers and the economy in Scotland.

The economic damage of the Corona Crisis has increased calls for public spending on large infrastructure projects in order to provide an economic stimulus. Given the ongoing Climate Emergency, all new capital expenditure should be:

  • Zero-carbon. In the field of transport, Transport Scotland has pursued a systematic bias towards high-carbon capex over the past decade. This high-carbon bias must now be urgently reversed.
  • Scottish. To maximise multiplier effect benefits for the Scottish economy, priority should be given to capital expenditure projects which have greater potential to be carried out by Scottish companies and by Local Authorities.

In addition to supporting the shift to a low-carbon transport system through investment in sustainable transport, supporting the avoidance of unnecessary travel will be another key factor in reducing transport emissions. The rapid uptake of homeworking and videoconferencing during the lockdown demonstrates that avoiding travel is feasible for many people.