Decoupling the Environmental Impacts of Transport from Economic Growth

image of Decoupling the Environmental Impacts of Transport from Economic Growth

Transport activity continues to cause large adverse impacts on the environment, human health and the economy. But is a negative impact of transport on the environment a necessary consequence of economic growth? This book illustrates that decoupling the environmental impacts of transport from economic growth is achievable, through the efficient use of charges, fees, taxes and other economic instruments. These economic approaches can complement regulatory measures to encourage a shift towards more environmentally-friendly modes of transport, such as from road to certain forms of rail transport. Other factors which could help to decouple transport impacts from economic growth are improvements in freight transport logistics, and dematerialisation.

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Transport and the Economy

This chapter begins with a discussion of the general links between transport and economic activity. The factors influencing transport demand are analysed in the second section. The chapter then focuses on recent trends in passenger and freight transport. The responses of transport to economic changes are analysed in the section dealing with elasticities. The relation between growth in transport infrastructure and economic growth in general is analysed in the last two parts of the chapter.

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