Time to start to think about road pricing for Penang

USA tollbooth attendent

* Let’s getstarted with https://worldstreets.wordpress.com/tag/road-pricing/ for now.

 And then there is this thing, this strategy, this proven working tool for congestion relief called “road pricing” – but also congestion charging, congestion tax, ERP, etc. These are programs that exist in cities and extended areas in a growing number of democratic countries, each of which require that all road users each bear a fair share for their personal transport choices and addition to the costs of increased congestion, and for other related social costs, including traffic accidents, noise, air pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions.

But there is a problem. It requires a bit of work and thought to understand what it is all about, but that does not seem to preclude a certain number of good souls who are not willing to put in the time needed to understand from having strong opinions about why it is a lousy thing to do.

Populists politicians habitually rally their supporters against such policies on the grounds that they are unfair to everyone but in particular the poor. Not true and the strong logic of the system and excellent experience are in places like Singapore, London, Stockholm and yet others are strongly in their favor. The challenge is to make this known in fair and understandable terms. Quite a challenge indeed!

We shall be going into this in some detail in the weeks’ ahead.

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About the author:

Eric Britton
9, rue Gabillot, 69003 Lyon France

Bio: Britton is an American political scientist and sustainability activist who has lived and worked in Paris since 1969. Professor of Sustainable Development, Economy and Democracy at the Institut Supérieur de Gestion (Paris), he is also MD of EcoPlan Association, an independent advisory network providing strategic counsel for government and business on policy and decision issues involving complex systems, social-technical change and sustainable development. Founding editor of World Streets, his latest book, "BETTER CHOICES: Bringing Sustainable Transport to Your City" focuses on the subject of environment, equity, economy and efficiency in city transport and public space, and helping governments to ask the right questions. A pre-publication edition of Better Choices is currently undergoing an international peer review during Sept.- Oct. 2017, with the goal of publication in English and Chinese editions by end-year. If you wish to participate drop a line to BetterChoices@ecoplan.org .

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One thought on “Time to start to think about road pricing for Penang

  1. From Gabriel Roth: a senior member of the World Bank team to provide backing and support for the original 1975 Singapore road pricing (“Area Licensing Scheme”) project:

    :”I wonder if anybody in Malaysia remembers that, around 1980, the Government of Malaysia sought a loan from the World Bank which included provision for better road pricing in Kuala Lumpur, on the model of the Singapore scheme that opened in 1975.”

    Reply

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