web analytics
The Standard

Delusional transport predictions

Written By: - Date published: 12:12 pm, June 16th, 2014 - 57 comments
Categories: transport - Tags: , , , ,

This morning I was reading the Transport Blog on The Draft 2015-2025 Government Policy Statement released by the Ministry of Transport. This is the main starting point for a number of the transport planning documents over the coming decade(s).

Ignoring the questions about the climate change issues and use of public transport as a topics for another day, just looking at the assumptions that underly the MOT’s planning model about passenger transport makes me think that the planners there are completely delusional. Or just so far in bed with the road construction industry that they prefer to ignore economic realities.

From the Transport blog’s excellent post.

The sections on Existing Demand and Travel Forecasts are perhaps some of the most interesting and are something that didn’t exist in the previous GPS. However they seem to be an attempt by the MoT to continue trying to justify spending the XX% of the transport budget on massive new motorways. They do seem to be finally acknowledging that traffic volumes haven’t grown but then push the argument that everything is just a blip and will recover again soon.

30. GPS 2015 (draft) has been prepared following a period of modest increases in freight demand and flat demand in light vehicle travel, measured in vehicle kilometres travelled (VKT). This is illustrated in Figure 2.

31. Demand grew strongly through the early 2000s, easing back through the middle of the decade. Following the global financial crisis in 2008, demand returned to close to 2005/6 levels and remained at these levels through to the end of 2013. A similar period of flat demand occurred in the aftermath of the fuel crisis in the early 1970s. In that case, demand remained soft for more than 10 years.

2015 GPS - Travel Demand & Fuel

The problem with this is that overall the economy has already recovered and improved yet we are still to see any upward change in VKT or fuel consumption. The difference in the graph above where fuel consumption started increasing again is likely tied to fuel prices getting cheaper and there’s no sign that’s about to happen again anytime soon. In fact there’s not even a single mention in the document of what might happen to fuel prices in the future which in my opinion is a massive omission. Fuel prices can clearly have a massive impact on driving demand and without increased demand the already shonky economic cases for the massive roading spend up will be even worse.

This is “planning”? It looks far more like a wishful thinker with delusions of being back in the 1960s. Why?

If you look at the barrel price of our main reference crude over the last 30 years, as can been seen in this chart from interest.co.nz

The cost of crude oil we buy on international markets has fluctuated markedly over the past 30 years, even more so in NZ$, but the inflation-adjusted cost (“real” cost) shows we have benefited from a long period of relatively low costs.

Back in the 1970’s a increase in the real local landed price for crude caused a series of economic shocks to our economy. The increase in petrol prices, the use of CNG and LPG from the new gas fields,  the reduction of the maximum road speeds, and the imposition of carless days all contributed to the flattening of the consumption of petrol that lasted until the price of imported oil crashed.

The rise of fuel prices from 1999 as the world economy boomed had a strong impact on the cost of fuel in the budgets of families as shown by in the index of petrol prices and the consumer price index.

From Stats NZ

Obviously this chart is a little out of date as cuts off as the global financial crisis impacted starting in 2007. However the slowly increasing real cost of fuel since then has continued to rise slowly and remains a significiant part of the consumer price index .

But the trend is clear, when the fuel component cost of the CPI rises up high enough, then the numbers of passenger kilometres and the amount of fuel consumption stalls. This is exactly what we have seen from 2006 onwards.

So why does the MOT think that real fuel prices are likely to remain static or decrease as they did in the mid-1980s.

Who knows? That is what seems delusional to me because there is nothing that indicates an increase of cheaper oil, or a reduction in demand worldwide, or even a viable lower cost alternative. Everything appears to indicate that the operating cost of transport is likely to increase for both families and businesses.

The proven reserves of oil have increased over time at a steadily reducing rate (and there is a lot of contention about some of these statistics).

proven oil reservesBut increasingly these reserves are in harder to extract (and therefore more expensive) heavy oils and tar sands.

But there is also more demand from different consuming nations as developing countries start using more in developing and maintaining their economies. For instance look at the rise of China as a consumer.

All of this indicates that the rising prices of extraction and the increased competition for oil is going to lead to a long period of increasing petrol prices.

Sure, we may find an economic way of producing transport without petrol for instance with electric vehicles. For instance with the Telsa “gigafactory“. However the resulting overall cost of such vehicles is likely to be at prices points that are well above the cost of the current vehicles based on current cheaply extracted and refined fuels.

So what is the government planning on spending transport money on over the coming decade? Transport blog summarises the high level mid-point spending and it is a lot more roads.

Midpoint estimates of transport costs from 2015-2024 from the Government Policy Statement on Transport

Somehow based on what looks like a delusional belief that people are going to start driving more as the price of petrol is going up, the MOT is planning about $17 billion dollars to be  sunk into (what I think will be) white elephant new roading over the coming decade.

They are completely delusional and appear to be living in the 1960s.

In fact I suspect that they should be regarded as being a arm of the roading construction industry.

57 comments on “Delusional transport predictions”

  1. ghostwhowalksnz 1

    For the original De Leuw Cather report in the early 60s, they used incorrect population density, and then justified a web of motorways for Auckland.
    It seems likely that population density for Auckland has really taken off in the last 5 years or so.

    Just done a quick check of a busy Auckland rd, Te Atatu Rd
    5day ADT peaked at 47600 in 2004 , in 2009 it was 37,700

  2. fambo 2

    Slight detour from the topic at hand but I’d like to see members of the Automobile Association rise up and tell the AA’s board or whoever is in command of that organisation that they belong to it in case they break down and need help – not because they support its right wing attitudes on everything to do with cars.

  3. Tracey 3

    Interesting terminology. They talk about numbers dropping but say they will “recover”. Recover suggests that numbers failing is negative, an ailment to be cured.

    • Draco T Bastard 3.1

      That would be how they see it, yes. As it stands our entire economy is based around ever more consumption of scarce resources and any decrease in that consumption is considered bad hence the delusional idea that a Steady State Economy will be in perpetual recession.

  4. Chooky 4

    Phil Twyford on Radionz mid- day news on Labours roading policy…Looking good!… getting rid of proposed motorways!…saving billions?

    From TV3 News…..’Labour criticises Government’s transport policy’…Monday 16 Jun 2014 8:28a.m.

    The Government’s draft transport policy statement outlining a multi-billion dollar spend-up over 10 years shows it is stuck in the 1950s, Labour says.

    The statement, released on Sunday, says its priorities for $38.7b of spending includes a focus on road safety, value for money, productivity, maintaining regional roads and the continued funding of its “roads of national significance” programme.

    But Labour transport spokesman Phil Twyford says the focus is far too much on motorway projects which are poor value for money.

    “There is no new commitment to improving public transport infrastructure in our largest cities. John Key’s road to Damascus conversion to Auckland’s City Rail Link last year increasingly looks like it was just a photo-op,” he said.

    “There is a lot of rhetoric about the need for more efficiency in moving freight around, but National has only one tool in the box – moving bigger trucks on bigger motorways.”

    Mr Twyford says Labour will take a more intelligent look at how investing in rail, ports, coastal shipping and roads can boost economic development in the regions.

    “The draft policy acknowledges that traffic demand has been flat lining for several years now, but then in a giant leap of faith assumes that rapid growth in traffic demand will shortly resume,” he said.

    “Gerry Brownlee’s motorways obsession is stuck in the 1950s but New Zealand needs a 21st century transport policy,” Phil Twyford says.

    The Government says it will begin construction of Auckland’s inner-city rail link in 2020, and Mr Brownlee says studies show it is unlikely the city will meet targets set by the government to bring the construction forward.

    “We’re also very mindful that Aucklanders do like to use their cars,” he told Radio New Zealand.

    “We’re playing catch-up in what has been probably two decades of underspend in the roading network.”

    The Government will consult on the document until August 11 and a finalised version will be released after the 2014 general election.

    NZN

    Read more: http://www.3news.co.nz/Labour-criticises-Governments-transport-policy/tabid/423/articleID/348724/Default.aspx#ixzz34lCjTbz3

    • adam 4.1

      Twity Twyford offering the bear minimum again. Sheesh why do the labour faithful put up with this right wing twat? As for Len, what a conniving little pillock he has turned into. He sound more and more like this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9u0EL_u4nvw&feature=kp especially when it’s anything to do with transport or making Auckland a better place to live. Ken you are a shining light for all those who did not vote – proof if you ever needed it – politicians are only interested in self interest.

    • Draco T Bastard 4.2

      We’re also very mindful that Aucklanders do like to use their cars,” he told Radio New Zealand.

      No, really, we don’t – we just don’t have any fucken choice.

      “We’re playing catch-up in what has been probably two decades of underspend in the roading network.”

      Get it right – we’re playing catch up on six decades of under-spend in public transport.

      • hoom 4.2.1

        Get it right – we’re playing catch up on six decades of under-spend in public transport.

        Absolutely.

        And per http://www.congestionfree.co.nz/ catching up only takes a fraction of the planned Road spend.

        Basically delay a couple of bits of motorway by a few years & we come out with a great public transport network that both makes life better for non car owners & reduces the number of cars on the roads.

        See http://transportblog.co.nz/2011/10/15/harbour-bridge-traffic-flows/ for the impact of the North Shore busway on Harbor bridge traffic: Number of people crossing up but number of vehicles down = much improvement for car people as well as the PT users.

  5. Poission 5

    anything to do with transport or making Auckland a better place to live.

    Why the hell should people in the Chatham Islands or the east or west coasts subsidize (through their petrol tax) Auckland transport in any form.

    • lprent 5.1

      Because they don’t have to?

      Over the last few decades less than half of the money raised in the Auckland region from petrol taxes is spent in the Auckland region. Start here.

      When we finally got the ability to levy extra taxes specifically for funding the Auckland public transport system after decades of the rest of the country ripping of Auckland, the moronic National government stopped it. Sure we use roads elsewhere in the country, but not the billions that are ripped off to maintain and build roads that are largely for the benefit of people in the other parts of the country.

      As it stands, what I’d like to do is to separate the transport taxation for Auckland from the National system and just spend it in Auckland with a few smallish transfer payments to the other parts of the country.

      Are you really such a complete idiot that you don’t realize how underfunded the Auckland transport system has been for the last 4 decades?

    • hoom 5.2

      Why the hell should people in the Chatham Islands or the east or west coasts subsidize (through their petrol tax) Auckland transport in any form.

      Auckland with over 1/3 of the population pays over 1/3 of the tax but gets under 1/3 of the spending -> Why is Auckland losing out on having good PT by having to subsidise uneconomic roads in those other places?

  6. srylands 6

    You are missing the point. Most of our roads are totally inadequate for current traffic volumes. It is not about growth. The Wellington northern corridor is a good example.

    Corridor investment to major ports and airports is a focus for investment in the OECD. The Government is following that prescription (albeit 20 years too late and too little).

    You are fond of using the adjective “massive” to describe roading and motorway investments. The planned investment is modest, not massive. We just don’t have the money for massive investment. New Zealand currently has a pathetically low incidence of motorways compared to other nations. (Yes I can provide sources of you wish). The planned investment will change our status from pathetically low to just sadly low.

    We are not going to take our goods to port on trains or coastal shipping in volume. They are not competitive.

    • McFlock 6.1

      What’s this “we”, australian?

      The fact that rail is not seen as more “competitive” demonstrates that less efficient road transport is subsidised by taxpayers. It also demonstrates the dull thinking applied by neolibs such as yourself when it comes to evaluating private good from public expenditure.

      Not to mention the analogy that the answer to “my belt is too tight” is not always “get a bigger belt”. The healthier answer might be “lose some weight”.

    • Draco T Bastard 6.2

      You are missing the point. Most of our roads are totally inadequate for current traffic volumes.

      No, it’s you who are missing the point. Traffic volumes are dropping and will drop further as the price of fuel continues to increase.

      It is not about growth.

      According to the MoT, who are the ones doing the projections, it is.

      Corridor investment to major ports and airports is a focus for investment in the OECD.

      Electric rail is a better investment.

      New Zealand currently has a pathetically low incidence of motorways compared to other nations.

      We don’t actually have to follow the failed systems of other nations.

      We are not going to take our goods to port on trains or coastal shipping in volume. They are not competitive.

      Yes they are. The only reason trucks are winning out at the moment id because they’re not paying their way like the trains are. Have the RuCs properly charge road users and trucks would stop over night.

      • tracey 6.2.1

        he thinks the port in wellington is a “major port”.

      • Wayne 6.2.2

        Draco,

        From my experience in travel to overseas cities (including European cities), Auckland and surrounding areas are well underdone for motorways. Most of what is planned is what we need now.

        Obviously there is a limit to what is needed, but from what I see the plan is pretty sensible. Not having a motorway to Hamilton, and for that matter to Tauranga is a major impediment to growth.

        Not having motorway links to the port and to the airport produces congestion on all the neighbouring roads.

        The problem was that from around 1990 to 2005 we just did not spend enough, and congestion got out of control.

        I suspect once the current and proposed projects are complete we can probably take a breather, the catch up will have been done.

        But the result will be safer, faster travel with fewer accidents.

        • karol 6.2.2.1

          With the current motorway plans, I can’t see any improvement in the next few years in getting in, around and out of New Lynn at peak periods. At the moment it is diabolical, especially if trying to get to any part of greater Auckland that is not the CBD or en route to it.

          We need a massive public transport upgrade, now.

          PS: I think Auckland’s public transport system compares poorly with that in overseas cities. Why not improve that first, then see what roading is needed to supplement it?

        • Macro 6.2.2.2

          “Not having a motorway to Hamilton, and for that matter to Tauranga is a major impediment to growth”

          You have to be joking! Ever heard of “rail”?

          I know – taking trucks off the roads is not going to be liked by your mates in the “transport industry”. But quite frankly their time is about to come to an end. They are going to be priced out of the market as oil escalates to unprecedented heights. A thinking government would be planning for this – not spending stupidly on white elephants.

        • Draco T Bastard 6.2.2.3

          I agree that a transport upgrade is needed but motorways and highways aren’t. What we need is better trains. Electric and high speed.

          In the cities we need better public transport.

        • Macro 6.2.2.4

          I’d invite you Wayne to take a bus trip from Manukau city to the airport or anywhere else from Manukau for that matter. The “bus station”, if you can call it that, is situated outside the large mall by Countdown, and has room for about 3 buses at most. At anytime during the day there are up to least 20 busses trying to use this space blocking the road thru, and around 100 people waiting with shelter for about 10 max. If the minister really wanted to do something about improving transport – he would look at spending more money on making public transport more accessible and user friendly for a start. Now I realise that this is a City of Auckland Problem – but I think there is also a lack of vision by a Minister whole quite frankly doesn’t understand the problem.

          • karol 6.2.2.4.1

            Good points, macro. From Wayne’s comments above, it looks like his travel routes are not the same as those for Westies or south Aucklanders. His route looks to be North Shore to CBD, motorway south, and the airport.

            • lprent 6.2.2.4.1.1

              SH20 will help a lot with the latter two. Of course there isn’t any public transport on that route that I am aware of.

              Checking… For leaving now you can get a bus from Albany to the CBD for $5.60, then the Air bus to the airport for $16.00 (ouch). Travel time estimated at an hour and 38 minutes.

              Be interesting to see what happens after the SH20 comes online. My guess is that sometime in the next two decades afterwards we will get a route change that notices the new motorway… After all, they have only just started changing the bus routes from the 1980s through much of Auckland.

              😈

              • karol

                Is there a direct public transport route from West Auckland to the airport?

                Ah, no. It’s necessary to travel to Mt Eden station first.

                New Lynn to Mt Eden, $4.60 – 21 minutes.

                But, I think getting to an from the airport is not a priority for many Westies.

              • Macro

                My travel to the airport is from Thames. By car it is actually an easier drive than from previously Coatesville! But if going overseas for any length of time there is the problem and cost of car parking. Actually as a senior I can travel for $16 from Thames to Auckland airport by Intercity bus interchanging at Manukau to the Airporter which runs about every 15 mins during the day. In other words its a no brainer, the bus is better. My comment to Wayne above is based upon a recent experience of returning and waiting at the Manukau “bus station” for about 20 mins for the Thames Intercity. My what a shemozzle!

        • Tracey 6.2.2.5

          how did your travel to overseas cities inform your experience of public transport there and in auckland

    • lprent 6.3

      I’m always surprised that you think that Wellington has much going on that is productive? But your previous writing indicates that it is the only place you seem to think that exists in NZ. Pretty delusional…

      Sure moving the Wellington airport to the Hutt would probably help. That is where the airfreight will come and go from. But basically there is bugger all productive traffic to and from it or even to and from the Wellington port, so it probably isn’t that cost-effective.

      Christchurch hasn’t really had a particular problem with either the port or the airport that I’m aware of. Fixing up that damn parking lot would be useful at the airport.

      Auckland has problems with access to both the port and the airport. But they are due to congestion of private cars on the roads to each. The effective way to reduce the congestion is to remove cars off Auckland roads is to put in public transport to cover peak loadings which is when the place snarls up for hours.

      The single most effective transport investment that have been has been done in NZ in the last decade was putting the northern busway in. The reason why is it meant now 7 years later that ~40% of the peak passenger traffic over Auckland Harbour Bridge is now carried by buses and we lost most of the endemic jams that used to happen there every day at the rush hours, including transport to the ports. Which mean that the very large replacement cost of the bridge could be deferred for at least a decade (and probably considerably more).

      Completing SH20 is going to help traffic to bypass most of the Auckland jam point at the CBD, which will help a lot. But without getting cars off the road, it will just jam up as well in a decade. But if you really wanted to fix the issue about getting to and from the airport, the biggest single shift would be to put a train line to there. Probably wouldn’t help the airport as they make most of their money on storing cars…

      But moving commuters to rail and bus around Auckland will help even more. It gets more people off the roads.

      Now that the twin rail has largely been done, that requires the central rail loop at the heart so that trains and buses can stop doing the awkward spoke system they currently use of always blocking up at the CBD where the routes converge.

      Damn sight better to use our existing roads in Auckland more efficiently by getting people off them, because there really isn’t that much more room to put more of them on the isthmus

      I don’t know of many other places in NZ that have problems getting to either their airports or their ports. Tauranga would be the only one that comes to mind as a possibility.

    • Lanthanide 6.4

      “New Zealand currently has a pathetically low incidence of motorways compared to other nations. ”

      Please show us the other countries that have the same population density we do, and the short history as a nation, ie one that hasn’t had hundreds/thousands of years to build up infrastructure.

  7. Ennui 7

    I read this column with wry amusement: the oil is going to run out and there are NO alternatives on the current scale (despite what outraged technology geeks will scream at me..please dont confuse technology and energy, they are not the same). Maybe not tomorrow, not in my lifetime even, but it will. Full stop.

    What the whole Nact transport plan and the response from Labour betrays is the unitary vision of economic growth, and ever increasing use of resources especially energy. So bravely we head towards an NZ where the remaining car with the last tank of petrol will be able to hurtle forth along a multi-lane highway free of obstruction, and maybe fall off an unfinished bridge. In a brave attempt to deny economic collapse, leave it in the dust. Yeah right!

    You might think Standardistas might be prescient enough to point out good uses, maybe better uses, for the last of the liquid energy. Real transition plans, real sustainable economies. But no, its all growth growth technocures etc…..God I am bored.

    • lprent 7.1

      I had a problem with responding to this particular bit of stupidity from the transport ministry. So I figured that I would just operate within the framework that they might be able to understand. That is why this was the second paragraph started with.

      Ignoring the questions about the climate change issues and use of public transport as a topics for another day, just looking at the assumptions that underly the MOT’s planning model about passenger transport makes me think that the planners there are completely delusional.

      In this case that they thought the relative price of fuel would fall and there would be an increase in kilometres travelled by private cars and we were experiencing just another decade long blip that would correct itself eventually. It isn’t and they won’t. After a couple of the existing roading projects like SH20 are done to complete the existing network, I can’t see the point in more roads.

      Sure I could have written a debate on alternatives. But the only one that I see as being viable at present with current technologies is various forms of public transport. What I was questioning the transport ministry about their own assumption. Just pouring cold water on that took a thousand words and a lot of graphs.

      Did you want me to write thesis?

      • Ennui 7.1.1

        No Iprent, thesis not required, I probably need a little more tolerance and to read / comprehend better. Good post, just my bad temper.

    • Colonial Viper 7.2

      the oil is going to run out and there are NO alternatives on the current scale

      To be precise, there will be plenty of oil left in the ground when it becomes unaffordable to pump any more. (Either financially unaffordable, or from the critical standpoint of EROEI). As Jeremy Grantham has speculated the problem we face in the next few years may not be one of peak oil SUPPLY but of peak oil DEMAND (due to the ever declining affordability of oil partly due to deteriorating economic and financial situations).

      You might think Standardistas might be prescient enough to point out good uses, maybe better uses, for the last of the liquid energy. Real transition plans, real sustainable economies. But no, its all growth growth technocures etc…..God I am bored.

      I presented a number of Labour Party MPs with several such transition ideas in 2011. Including the concept that there is only one moral use of our remaining fossil fuel reserves: to build infrastructure and capabilities which will help future generations of Kiwis survive fossil fuel energy depletion.

      I think they understood the message. Problem being, the perception is that there is zero urgency and zero electoral payback to even approach these issues. The suggestion that growth is over – even after years and years of stagnation/decline – is still heresy.

      • BM 7.2.1

        There will be a lot of natural gas conversions in the next decade or two, hybrid vehicles will be the big thing in the coming decades.

        We’re going to need roading for a loong time yet, doomer boy.

        • lprent 7.2.1.1

          Problem is that we’re rapidly running out of natural gas in NZ. The likelihood of finding another maui or kupe sized field is pretty low, and the smaller ones aren’t particularly economic at current prices.

          We have a particularly fractured geology because of how the landmass was formed around a joint in the seabed subduction zones. The explorations in the offshore basins isn’t showing much trace.

          Yes we could get gas shipped into NZ as LNG as is starting to happen around parts of the northern hemisphere. But it is a freaking long way to NZ from anywhere. It is not all that likely to be particularly economic unless they manage to exploit those gas fields in the Timor sea and don’t immediately sell the gas to Japan.

          I wouldn’t pin much hope of getting a cheap hydrocarbon source from our geology now that we have emptied our larger fields.

          • BM 7.2.1.1.1

            I thinking more the USA and Europe.

            More vehicles that switch to alternative fuel sources the less demand for petrol so petrol prices will stay within an affordable band.

            I’d say there’s quite a bit of fat within the price of petrol especially since companies like BP run the whole process all the way from pumping it out of the ground to pumping it into your car.

            Once the alternatives get a bit of momentum watch the price start to come down.

            • lprent 7.2.1.1.1.1

              Possible. But you remember how much it cost to do the conversion here to putting in that whole distribution network. I think that western europe is more likely to go electric because they’re already most of the way to getting a decent network to push power around from wind generators in places like the north sea .

              The US? I have no idea

              • BM

                That’s what will rule out Nz with the gas conversions, when I was a apprentice mechanic back in the 80’s we did a ton of CNG conversions

                That was only made possible due to the government converting the fleet to CNG and LPG, without governmental backing no ones going to out lay the coin for the refueling infra structure.

                Any hybrids within NZ would be of the Prius type.

                • lprent

                  I was referring to the infrastructure of making the CNG refueling stations available. No point converting a vehicle fleet if you can’t fill the things.

                  NZ was relatively easy to change compared to the colossal challenge of trying to set up the refilling network for the European or US population.

            • Draco T Bastard 7.2.1.1.1.2

              I thinking more the USA and Europe.

              What? For oil and gas? Are you fucken joking?

              They already import a large percentage themselves which means, effectively, that they don’t have anything to export. And their shale gas just disappeared:

              The US Energy Information Administration (EIA) has cut the Monterey Shale oil formation estimate by 96 percent to just 600 million barrels from 13.7 billion, due to a lack of extraction technology. The assessment cut US national reserves by 39 percent.

              Basically, we’re at the bottom of the world, aren’t particularly important to anyone and with very little resources. We can support ourselves but we ain’t going to be exporting a whole lot to be able to afford to import oil and politics won’t supply it either.

              Your fossil fueled dreams are over.

        • Ennui 7.2.1.2

          Hey BM, in the words of the Bard “as surely as night follows day” you will be without fuel. Enjoy the walk from your empty immobile metal overcoat.

  8. feijoa 8

    I read a comment in the local paper a few weeks ago, (Dompost), – an opinion piece about the transport plan, sorry can’t find it, but in it he said that the numbers of DRIVERS in NZ was falling- ie young people not bothering to get their licence, let alone buy a car.
    Does anyone know if this is true, as I have never heard it mentioned before

    • Once was Tim 8.2

      From memory, it’s also been covered briefly on Backbenches a while ago, and on radio.
      Although my daughter got her licence at 15, my son didn’t bother until he was about 27, and all their mates were reliant on them once they did (i.e. some still haven’t bothered getting a licence). So yes – it wouldn’t surprise me at all. There’s also been a huge increase in city apartment living over the years – younger people seem quite happy to use their feet (albeit as they unsuccessfully try to text and walk in a straight line at the same time – letalone drive FFS!), or public transport.

  9. dimebag russell 9

    time to reorganise rail and coastal shipping and take all the behemoths off the roads and get rid of the whole gigantic apparatus of national party patronage to road transport.

  10. evnz 10

    The draft plan is not a plan, all they have done is said lets add 1 billion in ten years then divide it by ten and apply this to the current transport allocations among cars, public transport etc. I could have done that!
    This sort of thing is called “business as usual” With “business as usual” global emissions, we will have used up the world’s entire carbon budget by 2031. In other words the National ‘plan’ does nothing to acknowledge this.Any realistic plan needs to start with “How do we go about reducing transport co2 emissions to zero before 2031?” and this is hardly even alluded to in the whole report
    Well before 2025 people are not going to tolerate these transport planners to stuff up our planet.

    • lprent 10.1

      Reread the second paragraph of the post a couple of times and use that seldom used organ – your brain.

      I could have written the post that you’d like to see with more depth and knowledge than your asine hysteria. However I chose to just point out and highlight a single weak point in the MOT’s own argument that everyone knows from firsthand experience.

      • evnz 10.1.1

        You have not replied to my post at all other than telling me to use my brain and accusing me of asinine hysteria. Is a comment on the content of it below you? You have missed my point which was not that some details of the plan are wrong,(which is what you choose to write about) but that the fundamental assumptions on which it is based, that the next ten years will be just like the last ten years, (and therefore that the transport plan can just look at what happened then and project it into the future,) are wrong.

        • lprent 10.1.1.1

          As well as running this rather busy site with the associated moderation and maintenance jobs, I also have a life that doesn’t relate to the site including at present quite a lot of holiday relaxing after my last job and a sluggish hunt for my next job.

          I tend not to argue points that I have already explained even when I put in one of my characteristic nasty goads. I explained several times in the comments and the post why I didn’t go into issues of climate change on this post. It would have simply made the post too long and wasn’t required to point out the inherent flaws in the policy.

          But if you wanted to see what I think about climate change, then I suggest that you click my handle on the post and look through my back catalogue of posts. Or use this in the search engine “@author lprent climate change” after selecting posts in the Advanced link.

          Personally, spoken as someone who was actually trained in earth sciences and who I suspect has a much clearer idea about the inevitable changes approaching than you, I simply think that you are incorrect. I don’t think that we will see significiant climate effects until closer to the 2030-2050 period. I think that the already irrevocable effects then will convince everyone. I don’t think that the imminent shift away from ocean buffering in the forthcoming el nino’s in the next 15-20 years will be enough for people to “see”. I also suspect that your opinions lack the kind of attention to detail that would make it worth me engaging with you on the subject.

          But if you really want to insist on telling me what I should write about, then I suggest you look in the policy – the section on self-martyrdom offenses, and the last section in the about and learn to control your rather dumb egotism. Try OpenMike.

          • evnz 10.1.1.1.1

            Deepest apologies. I am new to your site and just steamed in a bit I guess. I can see now that abruptness is part of your distinctive style and took offence unjustly and didn’t read your original post carefully enough either. Keep up the great work. When things come round to my area I will pop back in. cheers

            • lprent 10.1.1.1.1.1

              Yeah I seem to get grumpier as I get older, spend more years running this site, and keep hearing dealing with the same issues over and over again.

  11. john 11

    The problem with the transport blog is they mistake fuel used for kilometers travelled.

    Before the GFC small cars were not nearly as common, in fact just 2 were in our top 10 most popular vehicles. Now 5 of our 10 most popular selling cars are small cars, including the top 4.

    The ANZ truckometer shows our traffic dropped during the GFC, but has grown significantly since then to above the previous peak, and significantly above for trucks.

    We need significant spending on our roads for years, just to get them up to first world standards (and yes, the same goes for public transport).

    • lprent 11.1

      Ah no. Perhaps you could read the graph which has both on it or dig back to the MOT report. What you will find is that the MOT works off three separate measures at different times, which roughly have the same characteristics.

      Your ideas about how a recent change in buying patterns for new vehicles can change a car fleet that has an average age of more than 13 years, and where the majority of new registrations are second hand imports – well it borders on the idiotic delusional.

      I would leave a link, but it is a pain to do on a phone, and would have taken you only a minute to lookup on Google.

      In short, you appear to be a blowhard fool enamored of your own stupidity.

  12. john 12

    lprent says “Your ideas about how a recent change in buying patterns for new vehicles can change a car fleet that has an average age of more than 13 years, and where the majority of new registrations are second hand imports – well it borders on the idiotic delusional.”

    What is idiotic and delusional are your comments, because the small rankings were for BOTH new AND used car sales for ALL the years since the GFC.

    LPrent says “In short, you appear to be a blowhard fool enamored of your own stupidity.”

    If you want your abuse to be taken seriously, first you’ll have to wash your face – it’s dripping with egg.

  13. john 13

    Sorry – more eggs coming your way.

    You say it’s idiotic and delusional to think more small cars on the road will have any effect on the overall car fleet.

    MTA, who monitor the car fleet, because of fuel prices, say small cars “have had a significant effect on the makeup of the New Zealand vehicle fleet in recent years”.

    http://www.mta.org.nz/2013top10

    They also say in 2013 alone, an ADDITIONAL 57,000 cars were added to the vehicle fleet.

    MTA – “NZ vehicle fleet size increasing – expect more traffic, everywhere”

    http://www.mta.org.nz/n3777,198.html

    And the ANZ truckometer shows a steady and significant increase in both light and heavy traffic in 2010, 11, 12, 13, 14.

    http://www.anz.co.nz/resources/e/1/e18cfed4-2374-4f80-8d8e-8da97c17d59b/ANZ-Truckometer-20140610.pdf?MOD=AJPERES&CACHEID=e18cfed4-2374-4f80-8d8e-8da97c17d59b

Recent Comments

Recent Posts

  • Government has no credible climate change plan
    Today’s announced climate change target falls short of the ambition required to meet even our existing targets, says Labour’s Environment spokesperson Megan Woods. “The target announced today amounts to a decrease of only 11 per cent from 1990 levels. This… ...
    7 hours ago
  • Auckland house prices now 10 times incomes
    Auckland house prices have risen so steeply the typical house in our biggest city now costs 10 times the median Auckland household income, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Barfoot and Thompson reports the median house sale price in June… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Time for economic spin is over
     Business confidence in the latest NZIER Quarterly Survey of Business Opinion falling to its lowest level in three years is yet another warning of a staggering economy that cannot be ignored, says Labour's leader Andrew Little.   “This comes on the back of dairy prices falling… ...
    12 hours ago
  • Bullying contributes to Auckland being stripped of ICU training
    Complaints of bullying and harassment by supervisors which have contributed to Auckland’s critical care department losing its training accreditation are further evidence of the appalling culture at executive level, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “The department had its accreditation… ...
    4 days ago
  • Broadband failure sucks up more cash
    The Commerce Committee has blocked an inquiry into the $300 million rural broadband initiative (RBI) despite mounting evidence it’s a massive policy failure and waste of money, says Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran. “The Government is about to spend an… ...
    4 days ago
  • TISA – Another secret trade deal you may never have heard of
      This post first appeared on The Daily Blog You’ve probably heard of the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement (TPPA) by now and the widespread concerns around it but what about the Trade in Services Agreement (TISA) also being currently negotiated by… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    4 days ago
  • Health chickens coming home to roost as Dunedin loses right to train doctor...
    News today that Dunedin Hospital has lost orthopaedic training accreditation is a major blow and proves the Government’s prevarication is having devastating consequences, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. “Losing orthopaedic advanced training is serious. There is a knock on… ...
    5 days ago
  • $74,000 quarterly rise shows crisis out of control
    New figures out today showing Auckland house prices have spiked by a massive $74,000 in the past quarter is further evidence the city’s housing crisis has spiralled out of control, Labour’s “In spite of constant announcements and photo opportunities from… ...
    5 days ago
  • Democracy for Nauru now
    Murray McCully must send the strongest possible message to the Nauruan Government that New Zealand does not condone its actions given the disturbing developments there, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. “Right now we are seeing Nauru stripped of… ...
    5 days ago
  • Recovery needs more than a rebrand
    Today’s announcement of new governance arrangements for Canterbury seems to be nothing more than a fresh coat of paint on the same old approach, says Labour’s Canterbury Earthquake Recovery spokesperson Ruth Dyson. “The Canterbury Recovery has been too slow, with… ...
    5 days ago
  • Copper decision a victory for status quo, not Kiwi households
    New Zealanders hoping for cheaper copper broadband will be disappointed by the Commerce Commission’s latest decision in the long running saga to determine the price of copper, Labour’s ICT spokesperson Clare Curran says. “In an apparent attempt to appease everyone,… ...
    5 days ago
  • It’s time for hard decisions in the Bay
     The Ruataniwha dam project is turning into a huge white elephant as the economics fail to stack up, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri.  “Ruataniwha simply doesn’t make economic sense when you look at other major irrigation schemes around the… ...
    6 days ago
  • More testing won’t lift student achievement
    Hekia Parata’s latest plan to subject school students to even more testing and assessment won’t do anything to lift the educational achievement of the kids who are struggling, Labour’s Education spokesperson Chris Hipkins says. “New Zealand school students are already… ...
    6 days ago
  • Bad week for NZ economy gets worse
    The bad news for the New Zealand economy got worse this morning with the 8th successive drop in dairy prices at this morning’s global dairy auction, again exposing the absence of any Plan B from the National Government, Labour’s Finance… ...
    6 days ago
  • System failing to protect women and children from family violence
    Last week we called for mandatory child safety investigations in domestic violence cases. This came after the coronial inquiry into the deaths of Bradley and Ellen Livingstone and the verdict in the trial of the west Auckland boys charged with… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    6 days ago
  • Backers banking on social bonds cash?
    The Government is refusing to say what the $29 million it has set aside for its controversial social bonds programme is for, raising suspicions it is an upfront payment to the project backers, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. A… ...
    6 days ago
  • Plastic Free July
    Today is the start of Plastic Free July. Since its inception in Perth, Western Australia four years ago, more and more people and organisations from around the world have joined the call to refuse single use plastic products. Nearly all… ...
    GreensBy Denise Roche MP
    6 days ago
  • State house sell off Bill gives extraordinary powers
    The Government is about to give Ministers extraordinary powers to take direct personal control of selling state houses, exempting Ministers from normal legal requirements and leaving the sale process wide open for corruption, Labour's Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The… ...
    6 days ago
  • Cash for charter schools, mould for state schools
    At a time when state schools are struggling in old, cold, mouldy buildings and can barely make ends meet, the National Government is shovelling cash at charter schools which aren’t even spending the funding on kids’ education, Labour’s Education spokesperson… ...
    6 days ago
  • New Zealand needs a wise response to climate change
    Today in Parliament I got to hear from a group of New Zealanders who are concerned for the future of our country. Called Wise Response, the group is a broad coalition of academics, engineers, lawyers, artists, sportspeople and others who… ...
    GreensBy Russel Norman MP
    6 days ago
  • No alternative as waste scheme trashed
    Nick Smith must explain how he is going to prevent contamination of New Zealand’s ground and water with liquid and hazardous waste after scrapping the only monitoring scheme and offering no replacement, says Labour’s Environment Spokesperson Megan Woods. “From today,… ...
    6 days ago
  • Flawed system rates death traps as safe
    ACC Minister Nikki Kaye needs to come clean about what really lies behind the reclassification of 18 vehicles in her new motor vehicle registration system introduced today, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. "New Zealanders deserve the truth about the… ...
    7 days ago
  • Tiwai Smelter and 800 workers left in limbo
     Workers at Tiwai smelter and the people of Southland have once again been left in limbo over their future in the ongoing debacle over whether the plant stays open, says Labour’s Leader Andrew Little.  “It’s not good enough that after two years of… ...
    7 days ago
  • New twist in state house sell-off saga
    The Government has opened the door to buyers of state houses simply being landlords and not required to provide social services, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. The Prime Minister said at his post-Cabinet press conference buyers would not “have… ...
    7 days ago
  • Government fees will hit charities hard
    National’s decision to ignore the concerns of charities will see the voluntary sector face hundreds of thousands of dollars in new costs if the Policing (Cost Recovery) Amendment Bill passes, says Labour's Community and Voluntary Sector spokesperson Poto Williams. “National’s… ...
    1 week ago
  • Four out of ten for Simon’s Bridges
    The Transport Authority’s decision to fund only four of the 10 bridges promised in National’s shameless Northland by-election bribe is a huge embarrassment for Transport Minister Simon Bridges, Labour’s Transport spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “After one by-election poll showed they… ...
    1 week ago
  • Falling consents adding to Auckland housing woes
    Falling numbers of building consents being issued in Auckland will add to the city’s housing shortfall and fuel skyrocketing house prices, Labour’s Housing spokesperson Phil Twyford “The Productivity Commission found there was a shortfall of around 32,000 houses by the… ...
    1 week ago
  • So Mr English, do you have a plan?
    DIpping confidence about jobs, wages and shrinking exports are highlighting the lack of a plan from the government to diversify the economy and build sustainable growth, Grant Robertson  Labour’s Finance Spokesperson said. " Data released over the last week… ...
    1 week ago
  • Serious risks to tenants and assets in sell-off
    Overseas evidence shows there are serious risks around the Government's plan to sell off state houses to social housing providers, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “In the Netherlands – where community housing providers supply the majority of social housing –… ...
    1 week ago
  • Land of milk and money
    Kiwi families are paying over the top prices for their milk and someone is creaming off big profits, says Labour’s Consumer Affairs spokesperson David Shearer. “In 2011 the Government told us high New Zealand milk prices were a natural result… ...
    1 week ago
  • MoBIE largesse doesn’t stop with TVs and hair-straighteners
    The number of MoBIE staff earning more than $150,000 has risen 23 per cent in just a year, Labour’s Economic Development Spokesperson David Clark says. Documents obtained from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment show there are now nearly… ...
    1 week ago
  • English wants to flog state houses to Aussies
    Bill English’s admission that he would sell hundreds of New Zealand’s state houses to the Australians is the latest lurch in the Government’s stumbling, half-baked housing policy, Labour’s housing spokesperson Phil Twyford says. “Bill English should face reality and admit his… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Exports continue to fall as Government fails to diversify
    The Government quickly needs a plan to diversify our economy after new figures show that exports are continuing to fall due to the collapse in dairy exports, Labour's Finance Spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “Dairy exports fell 28 per cent compared… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Government inaction leads to blurring of roles
    The Treasury wouldn’t have had to warn the Reserve Bank to stick to its core functions if the Government had taken prompt and substantial measures to rein in skyrocketing Auckland house prices, Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson says. “The problems… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Courthouse closures hitting regions
    The Government’s decision to shut down up to eight regional courthouses, some supposedly only temporarily for seismic reasons, looks unlikely to be reversed, Labour’s Justice spokesperson Jacinda Ardern says.“The move has hit these regions hard, but appears to be a… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • A Victory for Te Tiriti o Waitangi
    This week my partner, who has a number of professions, was doing an archaeological assessment for a District Council. He showed me the new rules around archaeologists which require them to demonstrate “sufficient skill and competency in relation to Māori… ...
    GreensBy Catherine Delahunty MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Tough bar set for Ruataniwha dam
     Today’s final decision by the Tukituki Catchment Board of Inquiry is good news for the river and the environment, says Labour’s Water spokesperson Meka Whaitiri. “Setting a strict level of dissolved nitrogen in the catchment’s waters will ensure that the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister for Women and National missing the mark – part two
    The Minister for Women was in front of the select committee yesterday answering questions about her plans for women. Some useful context is that we used to have a Pay and Employment Equity Unit within the then Department of Labour… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Lavish penthouse spend confirms culture of extravagance
    At the same time thousands of New Zealanders are being locked out of the property market, the Government is spending up on a lavish New York penthouse for its diplomats, Labour’s Foreign Affairs spokesperson David Shearer says. News that taxpayers… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Māori Television exodus cause for concern
    The shock departure of yet another leading journalist from the Native Affairs team raises further concern the Board and Chief Executive are dissatisfied with the team’s editorial content, says Labour’s Māori Development spokesperson Nanaia Mahuta. “Annabelle Lee is an experienced… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Million-plus car owners to pay too much ACC
    More than a million car owners will pay higher ACC motor vehicle registration than necessary from July, Labour’s ACC spokesperson Sue Moroney says. “During a select committee hearing this morning it was revealed that car owners would have been charged… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Bill will restore democracy to local councils
    A new Labour Member’s Bill will restore democracy to local authorities and stop amalgamations being forced on councils. Napier MP Stuart Nash’s Local Government Act 2002 (Greater Local Democracy) Bill will be debated by Parliament after being pulled from the… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister for Women again misses the mark – part one
    Yesterday I asked the Minister for Women about the government’s poor performance on it’s own target of appointing women to 45% of state board positions. I challenged why she’d put out a media release celebrating progress this year when the… ...
    GreensBy Jan Logie MP
    2 weeks ago
  • Banks enter Dragon’s Den in pitch for Government’s mental health experi...
    Overseas banks and their preferred providers were asked to pitch their ideas for bankrolling the Government’s social bonds scheme to a Dragon’s Den-style panel, Labour’s Health spokesperson Annette King says. Dragon’s Den was a reality television series where prospective ‘entrepreneurs’… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Global Mode bullying won’t stop people accessing content
    It’s disappointing that strong-arm tactics from powerful media companies have meant Global Mode will not get its day in court. Today a settlement was reached terminating the Global Mode service, developed in New Zealand by ByPass Network Services and used… ...
    GreensBy Gareth Hughes MP
    2 weeks ago
  • More questions – why was the Former National Party President involved wit...
    Today in Parliament Murray  McCully said the reason Michelle Boag was involved in 2011 in the Saudi farm scandal was in her capacity as a member of the New Zealand Middle East Business Council. The problem with that answer is… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Minister must explain Maori TV interference
    Te Ururoa Flavell must explain why he told Maori TV staff all complaints about the CEO must come to him – months before he became the Minister responsible for the broadcaster, Labour’s Broadcasting Spokesperson Clare Curran says. “Sources have told… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • KiwiSaver takes a hammering after the end of kick-start
    National seems hell bent on destroying New Zealand’s saving culture given today’s news that there has been a drop in new enrolments for KiwiSaver, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson.  “New enrolments for the ANZ Investments KiwiSaver scheme have plunged… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Straight answers needed on CYF role
    The Government needs to explain the role that Child, Youth and Family plays in cases where there is evidence that family violence was flagged as a concern, Labour’s Children’s spokesperson Jacinda Arden says. “The fact that CYF is refusing to… ...
    2 weeks ago
  • Prime Minister confuses his political interests with NZ’s interest
    The Prime Minister’s statement in Parliament yesterday that a Minister who paid a facilitation payment to unlock a free trade agreement would retain his confidence is an abhorrent development in the Saudi sheep scandal, Opposition leader Andrew Little says.  ...
    2 weeks ago

Public service advertisements by The Standard

Current CO2 level in the atmosphere