Northumberland National Park embraces Green Transport Week each year, which this year took place June 16 – 24).
The week raises awareness of the impact travel has on the environment, and tries to make people stop and think about the way they travel on every journey.
Following Green Transport Week the National Park Authority reports:
- Ticket sales for Hadrian’s Wall bus service were up 10% last season – with more than 36,000 passengers. This service has expanded from just 600 passengers per year in the 1980s.
- Cycle tourism is expanding with new routes available throughout the National Park and across Northumberland including popular routes in the North Tyne and Kielder area.
- Businesses are being supported so that they can gain benefits from green tourism. An example is the award-winning Battlesteads Hotel – which was named Britain’s Best Green Pub 2010.
- Electric vehicles are being tried in various places and a rural network of charging points is being crated.
The Northumberland National Park Authority believes in in putting words into actions. It’s own fossil use has fallen in recent years and this has resulted in a saving of 2% of the National Park’s salary bill and a more than 35% reduction in its carbon footprint.
Since 2011 staff at the National Park have tried electric cars and found the charging point essential for using the vehicles in these remote rural areas.
Because Northumberland National Park is remote, making Green Transport a reality is a challenge. The area has from poor mobile phone and broadband coverage plus too few and far between petrol stations. However, the North East of England is set to lead the way on the production of electric cars (at nearby Nissan in Sunderland) and an extensive network of electric charging points is being built based on robust trials.
Stuart Evans a senior manager for the National Park Authority said: “Green Transport is a difficult challenge and one we have not shied away from. Currently, we are working with communities and businesses to help them set-up and run their own local petrol stations to fill the gaps left by the current market failure. Looking to the future, we aim to ensure our rural communities and businesses do not get left behind by the next generation of technology by trialling electric vehicles and the charging points.
“This is not easy. Where we find that mobile phone technology does work we use landline broadband to send data back to the national data centre. Like all useful trials, this is a learning exercise and by working with Newcastle University and leading British businesses we aim to ensure as many of the hard lessons are learnt and technological success is built upon.”
Northumberland National Park Green Transport links:
Electric vehicles deliver double the environmental benefit
Green Transport in the National Park
Cycle Tourism in Northumberland National Park
The Case Made to Parliament for Prioritised Mobile Broadband
Category: Industry news