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Transportist: April 2021
USDOT Secretary Pete Buttigieg recently said something not negative about Vehicle Mileage Traveled taxes (VMT taxes) . This raised a minor furore among the left, claiming inequity. Road pricing has long been criticised over equity issues, but to be clear, all taxes (including today’s fuel taxes) are somewhat distortive. But we don’t want to excessively subsidize road travel (which has a lot of negative externalities). So VMT taxes are a good thing, (especially for EVs, fuel taxes are fine for ICEs), and they are not worse than most alternatives.
I think that like other goods and services, roads should be paid for by users, and driving (including driving by electric vehicle) should be discouraged.
[Sorry, no new posts this month, they were all stuck on containers ships in the Suez Canal on their way to press. Read this by my colleague Michael Bell instead.]
Transport Access Manual: A Guide for Measuring Connection between People and Places has now been downloaded more than 3000 times.
Urban Findings is launching soon. We are plotting Energy Findings now. If you are interested, let me know. The journal continues to solicit articles of under 1000 words that have clear research questions, methods, and findings.
Aoustin, Louise, and David Matthew Levinson. 2021. “The Perception of Access in Sydney.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.21396.
Mothilal Bhagavathy, Sivapriya, Hannah Budnitz, Tim Schwanen, and Malcolm McCulloch. 2021. “Impact of Charging Rates on Electric Vehicle Battery Life.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.21459.
Aldred, Rachel, and Anna Goodman. 2021. “The Impact of Low Traffic Neighbourhoods on Active Travel, Car Use, and Perceptions of Local Environment during the COVID-19 Pandemic.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.21390.
Aman, Javad J. C., and Janille Smith-Colin. 2021. “Leveraging Social Media to Understand Public Perceptions toward Micromobility Policies: The Dallas Scooter Ban Case.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.21328.
Lanaud, Elsa, Andres Ladino, and Christine Buisson. 2021. “First Observations about Response Times and Connectivity in a Vehicles Platooning Experiment.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.21190.
Pereira, Rafael H. M., Marcus Saraiva, Daniel Herszenhut, Carlos Kaue Vieira Braga, and Matthew Wigginton Conway. 2021. “R5r: Rapid Realistic Routing on Multimodal Transport Networks with R5 in R.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.21262.
Lehe, Lewis, and David Levinson. 2021. “The Economics of Findings.” Findings, March. https://doi.org/10.32866/001c.19105.
Research by Others
Gregory H. Shill, Should Law Subsidize Driving?
News & Opinion
COVID and its Consequences
Cost far outweighs benefit: Sydney’s $11b [Western Sydney] airport rail link slammed. [A north-south line in a market that wants east-west travel]
Transport Agency Management.
Feds let MTA do simpler environmental review of congestion pricing. [New York may eventually get congestion pricing, but this is really waiting for Godot territory]
It’s Infrastructure Week again, Biden to reveal $2B, 8-year infrastructure plan
Batteries and Electrification
The US Is Real Close to Screwing Up Electric Vehicle Charging Forever [Competing charging standards and competing charging networks and competing payment systems, all of which have some natural monopoly aspects and network effects that are being wasted.]