Transport and Ethics

Transport and Ethics

Ethics and the Evaluation of Transport Policies and Projects

Transport Economics, Management and Policy series

Bert van Wee

This insightful book discusses the use of Cost–Benefit Analysis (CBA) for transport policy options from an ethical perspective. Each detailed chapter deals with issues such as: the use and ethical aspects of CBA in transport, social exclusion, the environment and long term sustainability, safety, ethics of research and modelling transport. It summarizes ethics-based critics on CBA and discusses their relevance for accessibility, the environment and safety. In addition it explores ethical dilemmas of doing CBAs and CBA related research. The book concludes with possible avenues for further exploring the links between transport and ethics.

Chapter 1: Introduction

Bert van Wee

Subjects: economics and finance, environmental economics, transport, valuation, environment, environmental economics, transport, valuation, urban and regional studies, transport

Extract

1.1 TRANSPORT AND SOCIETY Transport is crucial for society: societies cannot function without the transport of people and goods. It enables us to participate in many activities at different locations, such as living, working, education, shopping and visiting relatives and friends. In addition, it allows us to transport goods, from the locations of mining of raw materials, via several production stages, culminating in the shops where people buy products, or even up to the final locations of use, such as houses or offices. On the other hand, transport carries costs, in terms of money, time, effort and negative impacts on society. In most western countries people spend 10 to 15 percent of their income on transport (Schafer and Victor, 1997). On average, and at the aggregate level (e.g. all persons in one country), people travel between 60 and 75 minutes per person per day, in almost all countries worldwide (Mokhtarian and Chen, 2004; Szalai, 1972; Zahavi, 1979). In addition to time and costs, it takes effort to travel. Cycling takes energy, and the cyclist can get wet, while driving a car over a longer period is tiring for many people, and switching trains, or changing from a bus to a train, is itself a negative experience for most people, not to mention the time it takes (Wardman, 2001). Transport also causes negative impacts on society, mainly due to accidents, emissions of harmful pollutants and CO2, noise, the barrier effects of infrastructure for people, land take and fragmentation of nature. 1.2...