Tony Blair, ex-Prime Minister of Britain, claimed that Britons’ dependency on automobiles has “real downsides for our environment and quality life” and that transportation policy must acknowledge that car is a central part of modern transport. Four new options in road taxes have been proposed by Blair for consideration by the government.
First, drivers need to be charged per mile at a flat rate. This should not include a mileage allowance. To reflect vehicle weight and fuel consumption, the flat rate may vary to account for vehicle greenhouse gas and pollution impact.
The second was the introduction of congestion charges in more areas, similar to those in London. Other cities that have systems to charge cars for entering different areas include Oslo, Bergen, Gothenburg, and Stockholm. Blair suggested that charges be determined by the time of the day, and could be set at a maximum daily limit.
A time-based system would see drivers charged according to how long they drive. Although he claimed it would encourage people to drive more slowly, a time-based system could be used.
Blair’s last idea was a cost-per-journey system. Drivers log their trip into an app or built-in device on their phones, while a real time cost is deducted from a pre-paid account. This is similar to the way people use Uber today. He said that this would be the most privacy-compromising option.
FairFuelUK experts have criticized the proposal, warning that the updates will “hit the economic hard”.
The Treasury and Department for Transport stated that road pricing would fall like a balloon with world’s highest-taxed drivers, unless they can prove otherwise.
“Plus, our big brother should never monitor the vehicle’s movements.”
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FairFuelUK experts said: “Controversially, as Fuel Duty revenues plummet, all road users must contribute fairly to Exchequer. This means that electric vehicles and bicycles will also have to pay tax.”
Tony Blair Institute for Global Change believes that it is crucial to take immediate action and reform the road tax system for global and local benefit. This will be possible due to the 2030 ban on petrol and diesel car production.
According to him, car use can exacerbate societal inequalities because the “poorest people” are less likely to have cars, but more vulnerable to associated issues like air pollution.
Blair also pointed out the unfairness of the road tax system due to the increasing popularity and use of electric cars.
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Blair claims that electric car use will lead to more congestion. “A collapse in marginal costs of driving will cause traffic jams to increase by as much as 50%.”
He predicts also that taxes will increase across the board due to fuel duty tax being lost as a result of the transition to electric vehicles.
According to the Department for Transport, changes to the tax system were being considered at the moment by the Chancellor. However, they have yet to be confirmed.
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Publited at Thu, 02/09/2021 10:56.11 +0000