We can increase funding for research into better technology and more efficient and alternate means of public and private transport.
We can increase investment in subsidised public transport such as rail and bus. A more frequent and more efficient service will attract a greater number of passengers. This in turn will make public transport more economical to run. Use public transport when possible. Mass transport is a far more energy efficient means of transport than cars. Public transport systems can be made even cleaner, quieter, less fuel-consuming and less polluting.
Germany has discovered that spending on public transport creates twice as many long-term jobs as spending on new free/motorways. Asthma sufferers lose millions of working days every year, costing employers and the health and social security budget billions of dollars. This money will be saved and those suffering from the condition will be relieved by fewer cars and trucks being on our roads.
We can reduce the need for transport by setting up facilities locally. The trend has been to set up supermarkets out of towns. This results in empty city centres and greater usage of private transport. If cycle paths are built and roads made safe for cyclists this will encourage their use for short distances. Bicycles are the most efficient method of transport for short distances and trams or trains are optimal for longer distances.
Some cars are more fuel-efficient than others. Reducing the size of the engine to a 1300 cc can reduce fuel usage by 45% and careful driving can reduce fuel usage by 15%. Sharing car journeys saves money. On average cars carry less than 2 people.
Grants could be provided to make transport by sea or rail more common than at present. Currently 59% of freight tonne miles is by road. This is because it is more flexible, especially for shorter journeys. We can build a more extensive rail network.
Transport accounts for one-third of energy use in most Western countries, with the car taking up an increasing share. Through the use of lighter materials, electronic tuning systems, direct fuel injection and more streamlined bodywork, some major car manufacturers have produced prototypes which can travel more than 100 miles per gallon with little loss of associated engine performance. For now, energy use can be cut significantly by driving with more care at lower speeds, choosing from the more efficient models currently available, and walking, cycling or taking public transport where possible.
Urban expansion can be controlled by careful planning. We can make more efficient use of urban land to keep pressure off areas of environmental value. We can establish more urban recreation parks and gardens. Vacant and derelict land can be made into parks or useful land. City centres can be made safer, healthier and more comfortable to be in by closing them off to traffic. Car parks can be built underground or away from the centre and efficient public transport can be built to shuttle people in and out of the centre. Public trams, pedestrian pathways and cycle paths can be built for easy movement within cities.
At little cost trees of all shapes and colours can be planted in streets to add beauty and to provide shade, shelter and a home for birds and small animals.