ATA says incremental pricing not the answer to cut emissions

By: Jason Whittaker


The National Transport Commission’s (NTC) call for incremental pricing is running into opposition from the peak trucking industry body. The Australian

The National Transport Commission’s (NTC) call for incremental pricing is running into opposition from the peak trucking industry body.

The Australian Trucking Association (ATA) says the initiative, which slugs operators with higher charges to use certain routes, should not be introduced as part of a number of complementary measures under emissions trading.

The NTC has released a discussion paper on a number of measures that could be introduced in a carbon constrained economy, which includes granting wider access to B-triples, investing more in reducing urban congestion and bankrolling projects to improve supply chain efficiency.

But the ATA says based on the track record of state governments, incremental pricing will only add to government coffers rather than benefit the industry.

"Experience has shown that proposals like these don’t work," ATA Chairman Trevor Martyn says.

"Governments introduce the higher charges with great enthusiasm, but never get around to delivering the extra road access part of the deal."

The lobby, however, supports the take-up of high productivity vehicles, congestion management and extra funding for research and development in alternative fuels and engine technology.

Martyn says a typical line haul operator, based on NTC figures, will slash their carbon output by 5,900 tonnes a year as well as save more then two million litres of diesel by switching to B-triples.

But rather than wait for extra funding to come from government for research and development, Martyn says the ATA is to hold a technical conference in November to look at how operators can use less fuel through better technology, maintenance and operations.

"It will have practical demonstrations and workshops, including demonstrations of how better driver training can deliver fuel savings of up to 20 percent," Martyn says.

Part of the ATA’s proposal to reduce congestion is for governments to invest in creating effective public transport systems.

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