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Road User Charging

Volume 401: debated on Wednesday 19 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Transport why the illustrative (a) constant motoring costs and additional investment, (b) wider take up of local charging powers and (c) limited inter-urban charging scenarios, and the three illustrative scenarios combined, from the original 10-year plan have not been repeated using the new transport model; and how much he estimates it would cost the Department in (i) monetary terms and (ii) departmental manpower to carry them out. [103055]

There are several reasons why the scenarios have not been replicated. Our new National Transport Model is different to the one used for the original 10-year plan in a number of ways—including its multi-modal approach, more recent data and revised assumptions. Given this, attempting to replicate the scenarios would not provide us with useful information on the comparative performance of the two models. In addition, the information and assumptions on which the original scenarios were based has now been superseded, so the scenarios themselves would not be directly comparable.The limited information which would be gleaned means that replicating the identical scenarios has not been a priority for the modelling team. To date, and for the foreseeable future, run time is dedicated to priority work being undertaken as part of the review and roll forward of the 10-year plan. I have not estimated what the monetary costs would be, but due to the complexity of the model runs, the scenarios could take up to two weeks to produce, at the expense of urgent work required for the review and roll forward of the Plan.