Readers' letters: Planned LEZs will hit poorest hardest

"Councillors should get out to really understand what Edinburgh citizens face in their daily commute”

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 16th June 2021, 7:00 am
Edinburgh's South Bridge would be included in the council's planned Low Emission Zone. Picture: Lisa Ferguson

Planned LEZs will hit poorest hardest

I really think that Lesley Macinnes and Co want to get a taste of what it’s really like to commute and move around Edinburgh before they finally put into place their ill-thought out Spaces for People and Low Emission Zone plans.

I suggest that both she and her colleagues get up early on a number of days and undertake several sample commutes by bus, car and bicycle to really understand what the citizens of Edinburgh face in their daily commute

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The Lothian Bus Service is great but a family friend of ours travels by bus daily from the Marionville area to her employment near the Barnton Hotel and this journey can take up to one and half hours each way due to bus changes.

Anyone other than the Lycra brigade would find this a daunting cycle run at the best of times due to distance, hills, weather and traffic, reminding the Edinburgh City Council that this is not Holland and, of course, walking is out of the question.

The only realistic alternative for many people is to use the car for the reasons stated and remind the council that if the LEZ proposal is implemented many of the citizens, they purport to represent will be seriously inconvenience and financially impacted not to mention the potential increase in pollution due to longer journeys being undertaken to stay outside of the LEZ zone.

Finally, I would suggest that the May council elections cannot come soon enough for many of the citizens of Edinburgh.

Eric Anderson, Duddingston, Edinburgh.

Put cycle funds into greener cars

The recent article by Cllr Macinnes stating that 45 per cent of the population of Edinburgh did not have access to a private car seemed to be a very high percentage, particularly when no mention of where this statistic was lifted from.

So I looked to the Scottish Transport Statistics issued by the Scottish government for some statistics - "72 per cent of households have at least one car available for private use.

"Mode of transport to work - car 62 per cent / car (as passenger) 5.4 per cent / walk 12 per cent / bus 9.8 per cent / cycle three per cent.”

These are national statistics but I doubt Edinburgh is dramatically different to the national statistics.

It would appear to me that if the real object of Edinburgh's transport changes was a reduction in carbon pollution and a greener transport system for all residents, it seems clear that the monies spent on encouraging an increase in the very small number of cyclists would be better spent ensuring electric charging stations were installed throughout Edinburgh and some form of financial encouragement offered to the 72 per cent of the travelling community to switch from polluting petrol and diesel powered vehicles to electric / hybrid powered vehicles and to include public transport in a drive for fossil fuel reduction.

Mr K Clark, Lochend Park View, Edinburgh.

Price of freedom of speech can be costly

For many, a duty to promote progressive ideology goes beyond confronting traditionalists. Taking action to silence dissenters is what Edinburgh Council did when it cancelled Destiny Church's conference at the Usher Hall.

The council’s apology is welcome, but we must hope that the £25,000 damages award is sufficient to deter similar actions in the future.

We are not truly free if freedom is only to be found and the end of expensive, long and stressful legal proceedings.

Richard Lucas, Scottish Family Party, Glasgow.