Newslinks | 20th September 2007

The NewsEditor

Lib Dem Conference: Kramer calls for £10 Climate Air Levy The Scotsman reports that Susan Kramer, former Lib Dem Mayoral Candidate, has called for "£10 per passenger levy on Anglo-Scottish shuttle flights to pay for 170mph fast rail link between London and Edinburgh."

Certainly the policy of strengthening rail links between the capitals of England and Scotland is a good one. We need to look at ways of encouraging business to settle in the UK, and a high-speed rail link would certainly help this aim.

Susan Kramer continued in her speech: "High speed rail is the viable alternative to domestic flights and long car journeys. We know from examples across Europe that if journey times on any domestic route can be kept below two and a half hours, passengers will switch en masse from air to rail."

We need to look at schemes such as this, that take cars off the roads, and pollute less. Infrastructure upgrades such as this have long-term, high-return benefits not just for London, but the whole of the UK.

CrossRail needs to be ordered, now

The Business carries a often humorous article about CrossRail, comparing its build time with the creation of the Terracotta Army, part of which is now being shown in London:

It finally looks as if it will be given the go-ahead, perhaps during the Labour Party Conference next week – and not one moment too soon, given how desperately the London economy needs a more efficient and less time-consuming transport system.