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Government rail package a hit and a miss, says Logistics UK


The government’s Integrated Rail Plan, announced last week (18 November 2021), which includes the removal of the proposed eastern leg of HS2, represents a missed opportunity to enhance the efficiency of supply chains in the North and Midlands, according to Logistics UK.

“The scrapping of the proposed eastern leg of HS2 from the East Midlands to Leeds is a blow for efficient and sustainable supply chains across the region,” said Alexandra Herdman, Public Policy Manager at Logistics UK, “the new line would have released additional capacity for rail freight services to assist in connecting industry in the north of England with the rest of the country.   

“However, Logistics UK is delighted that there will be an upgrade to the TransPennine Main Line to enable additional freight services to be maximised in this part of the country, something the business group has been campaigning for over many years. This upgrade will enable containers to move swiftly from ports in the North East to major northern cities, which will help to support local economic development, while removing lorries from our congested roads and supporting the UK’s decarbonisation goals; for every tonne of freight transported by rail, the carbon emissions are 76% lower than road freight. We are also pleased to hear of the government’s intention to progress with the electrification of the TransPennine Main Line and Midland Main Line, a vital move in the UK’s mission to decarbonise its economy.  

“Unfortunately, it appears that rail freight is mostly an afterthought in the government’s plan; Logistics UK and its members would have appreciated further measures to facilitate specific investment into rail freight infrastructure. We urge the government to give greater emphasis to a strategic modal shift from road to rail to support efficient and sustainable supply chains.” 

*www.logistics.org.uk/rail

Published On: 25/11/2021 16:00:35

 

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