IN response to more factually incorrect letters claiming that 20’s Plenty will increase pollution, this is the UK government’s official position on this matter, published as part of their advice to local authorities urging them to make greater use of 20mph limits:
“In principle, driving more slowly (at a steady pace) will always save fuel and carbon dioxide emissions unless a quite unnecessarily low gear is being used. The underlying arguments are that moving a vehicle at a lower speed requires less power, and that avoiding unnecessary acceleration and braking saves energy.”
What the government forgot to mention is that by creating a safer road environment for walking and cycling, 20’s Plenty encourages people to leave their cars at home for short journeys (which are the most polluting since the engine is cold).
For those letter writers who point out there have been large reductions in the numbers of children killed or seriously injured on UK roads over the last 10 or 15 years, well yes, there have been. But the primary reason for this is not that we’ve made our roads safer, it is just that children are now kept indoors or driven around instead of being allowed to walk or cycle. As a result, more than a third of our children are now overweight or obese.
We need to reduce the danger imposed by traffic on our roads, and 20mph limits do this very effectively. The 42 per cent reduction in casualties I quoted for 20mph zones in London is “after adjustment for underlying time trends” – so takes into account the fact that casualties nationwide dropped over the same time period.
20’s Plenty aims to make Worthing’s roads safer for everyone – children, pedestrians, cyclists and motorists
If readers are genuinely concerned about reducing pollution and improving children’s lives in Worthing, then they might like to sign the petition in favour of 20’s Plenty at www.20splentyforworthing.org.uk