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Departmental Reviews

Volume 480: debated on Friday 17 October 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress he has made on his plans to revise the New Approach to Appraisal; and within what (a) parameters and (b) timescale the review is operating. (228024)

In July 2008, we published a document that summarised responses received to the NATA Refresh consultation, and set out our plans for developing the New Approach to Appraisal (NATA) framework. The document announced a number of changes to better capture the impacts of greenhouse gas emissions, travel time variability, the health benefits of active transport, and initiatives to better represent cycling and walking in transport modelling.

We are also working on further changes that will:

reflect continuing developments in analysing climate change;

improve the presentation of evidence in the appraisal summary table;

better capture transport’s contribution to economic growth;

ensure appropriate weight is given to assessments of transport’s impact on the natural environment;

capture the costs and benefits associated with new housing;

develop our approach to appraising social and distributional impacts of transport schemes; and

improve the dissemination of appraisal guidance.

Work is also in hand to consider the treatment of indirect taxation when prioritising transport schemes, and separately to consider whether it would be appropriate to adopt a lighter-touch appraisal approach for smaller schemes.

The scope of the NATA Refresh is limited to the New Approach to Appraisal. Improvements resulting from the NATA Refresh have already been made and we have plans for the next 12 months about how improvements will become part of the definitive set of guidance no later than April 2010. These are presented in the final pages of the summary of responses to the NATA consultation at:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/closed/consulnatarefresh/responses/