COMMONS

Rail infrastructure investment: Government and ORR respond

19 September 2018

Transport Committee publishes Government and Office of Rail and Road (ORR) responses.

The Transport Select Committee publishes the Government's and the Office of Rail and Road's (ORR) responses to the committee's Report on Rail infrastructure investment, published in June.

Chair's comment

The Chair of the Transport Committee, Lilian Greenwood, said:

"These responses are disappointing in several respects, particularly the Department for Transport's apparent unwillingness to engage with some of our key conclusions and recommendations.

It has nothing to say on the long-term cost-effectiveness and wider sustainability benefits of railway electrification. It provides very little detail on how it plans to implement emerging traction technologies such as battery and hydrogen power. Perhaps most concerning are the responses to our recommendations on changes to transport scheme appraisal methods, which give no sense that the Government intends to address biases against regions that have not received their fair share of investment for decades.

We have published the responses today, without substantive comment—people can draw their own conclusions on their adequacy. We will contact everyone who contributed evidence to our inquiry, inviting them to comment. We will draw on the analyses of stakeholders and continue to challenge the Department, Network Rail and the ORR on these and other important issues set out in our report.

The Department for Transport and the Secretary of State need to appreciate the role of the Committee, which is to scrutinise the work of the Department on behalf of Parliament and the public, and to engage with us properly."

Further information

Image: iStockphoto

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