Rail Sucks, Road Rules

Owen McShane has an excellent guest post on Whale Oil, which tackles the myth that rail is somehow “greener” than road transport. He quotes this extract from a 2004 report by the UK Institute of Economic Affairs.

The economic functions of railways could be carried out by express coaches and lorries at one-quarter the cost of the train, using 20 – 25% less fuel, requiring one-quarter to one-third of the land, and imposing a casualty cost on passengers half that suffered by rail passengers.

Do the Greens ever get anything right?

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3 thoughts on “Rail Sucks, Road Rules

  1. Umm, no it doesn’t. It argues that the rail corridors should be converted to dedicated roadways… the benefits you quote are the product of such a conversion.

    I think Liberty Scott’s analysis is what you were after; although it doesn’t reach the same conclusion.

  2. Um yes, it is far from black and white. Don’t fall into the same trap as the Greens – the Greens think train good, truck bad. Truck good, train bad is just as silly. The fact is both are good for certain purposes – and both are badly priced.

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