Friday, 7 November 2008


The car lobby, in the form of the RAC Foundation, has launched a report claiming that new roads are environmentally friendly and much needed.

In the Scotsman, the "myth-busting" report is fisked and heavily criticised by green groups, including Friends of the Earth Scotland. Its chief executive Duncan McLaren, who presumably doesn't run a Formula 1 team, says:
"Far from 'myth busting', the claims in this report comprise a litany of misleading assertions, half truths and straw men. I don't think I've seen such a dodgy dossier since the one used to justify war on Iraq."
Perhaps the dodgiest claim is this one:
Building roads will not have a significant effect on climate change, so long as wider policy measures are also introduced. Road building on its own can slightly increase carbon dioxide emissions, but it could also reduce emissions by up to 10 per cent if introduced alongside road-pricing.
So building new roads is green if we subsequently price people off them. But if road pricing is such a good idea, why not do it anyway?

Here's another top claim, with the Green Party's counterclaim:
RAC: The construction industry can accommodate a substantial increase in road building.

GREEN: The construction industry would no doubt deliver any level of road-building required.
Indeed. Still, the Express agrees that motorists are hard done by.

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