Open Gov. Licence.
During the Blean Forest by-election campaign Green campaigners met plenty of voters in favour of a 20mph speed limit in their ward. This is no doubt the case all over the Canterbury constituency. The most common argument we hear for people not using their bikes is fear of speeding vehicles on the streets.There is now a European petition you can sign “30kmh - making streets liveable!” http://en.30kmh.eu/. This is the result of an initiative by campaign groups across the EU, including the UK’s 20’s Plenty for Us http://www.20splentyforus.org.uk/.
Already 8.4m residents live in towns which are adopting or have adopted this policy. Most importantly, through democratic debate those communities have decided that "20's Plenty Where People Live". And it is those same communities who have then changed their behaviour to drive more slowly in residential streets and where people walk and cycle. In the UK Portsmouth, Oxford and Chichester have taken the important step of introducing this speed limit.
If more than a million people from at least seven EU countries sign up to the petition MEPs will have to debate the proposal to introduce 20mph/30kmh speed limits for urban and residential roads. The European Commission will also have to seriously consider how it could be introduced.
The Green Party has long championed 20mph speed limits in the European Parliament and elsewhere, believing that it represents road safety best practice across the EU. Green Party South East MEP, Keith Taylor, a member of the European Parliament’s Transport Committee, said: “Speed limits should be reduced wherever people live, to reduce injuries and fatalities, traffic noise, air pollution and CO2 emissions. The number of people dying on British roads is on the increase. More than 1,900 people were killed in 2011, three per cent more than in 2010, and the biggest increases were among children and those aged over 60.”
It cannot be disputed that many of these lives would have been saved if the vehicles involved had been travelling more slowly. The Green Party believes the European Citizens’ Initiative is an excellent use of the new EU process whereby EU citizens can launch their own proposals in any area of EU law which is within the EU’s competence. Keith concludes: “I would urge everyone to sign the petition and help make towns and cities across Europe safer and more pleasant places to live and travel.”
To find out more and sign the petition, go to: http://en.30kmh.eu/