Friday 09 July 2021
Malachai O'Hara, Deputy Leader of the Green Party in Northern Ireland, has described the latest NI travel survey as an indication of another year of failure by the Infrastructure Minister to make modal shift.
In 2017-2019, 71% of all journeys were made by car, 18% by walking, 5% by public transport and 1% by cycling. This is similar to 10 years ago.
Mal O'Hara commented on the figures:
"Car ownership has continues to increase and journeys by more sustainable modes continue to flatline. This represents an abject failure by successive Ministers and the Department for Infrastructure.
"Over 1 in 20 deaths in Belfast are attributable to air pollution, with a disproportionate impact in working class and inner city communities. 23% of emissions in Northern Ireland come from transport.
"1 in 4 adults and 1 in 5 of our children are categorised as obese. Improving active travel is good for public health, the planet and for people. The Assembly has declared a climate emergency and one of the key issues we need to address is reliance on the private car for transport. People want to cycle, use public transport and walk. It is the role of Government and the Executive to make that as accessible as possible.
"During the full year of the Covid pandemic, the Department for Infrastructure installed less than three kilometres of pop-up cycle infrastructure and no segregated cycle lanes. Other urban areas across the world transformed. Our city and urban areas did not because the Minister and Executive missed the window of opportunity."
Sinead McIvor - 07701 302 498