‘SA should reduce carbon emissions from road transport – Cronin’

Engineering News, 26 October 2010

Removing excess road use and improving efficiencies on South Africa’s roads seems to be the most viable option to reduce the transport sector’s carbon emissions in the short term.

Transport is the fastest growing emitter of greenhouse gases in South Africa, contributing to about one fifth of the country’s emissions, second only to its dependence on coal-fired power stations.

In addition to the negative environmental effects, the excessive use of the country’s roads also has a negative economic impact, with about R15-million a day lost due to congestion.

Speaking at a World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) future of transport convention in Johannesburg, Transport Deputy Minister Jeremy Cronin said that the country was suffering from a dysfunctional and inefficient transport system, brought on mainly by the urban sprawl.

The urban sprawl has lead to a number of challenges, including over exaggerated peaks. “Large fleets are needed to move people to and from work, while this fleet is then left idle afterwards. Consequently, government finds it difficult to sweat its assets, such as the 800 new Rea Vaya busses that was recently brought onstream.”

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