Traffic congestion in the UK is damaging our productivity and quality of life. For our small and densely populated island, road building cannot provide a way out, and increases in fuel duty have proved to be politically unpopular.
Road user charging is the only serious option open to tackle these problems. It provides a way of incorporating the cost of damage to the environment and the economy into the price of motoring, and restricts demand on the basis of motorists’ willingness to pay.
Road User Charging: A road map, sets out the important decisions government will have to take if it chooses to implement road user charging. It highlights the trade-offs between efficiency, public acceptability and equity, and provides a road map for moving the debate on road pricing from the why to the how.
This publication makes recommendations for a road pricing system that not only reduces congestion, but is also: technically and politically workable for the UK; gives appropriate priority to concerns about equity; and allows for significant contributions to reducing greenhouse emissions.