Transport Policy Tools to Achieve Sustainable Road Transport
Both the EU and Austria target their road transport policies at eliminating infrastructure bottlenecks, securing the requisite investment financing and reducing the environmental and accident costs of road traffic. Taxes and dues imposed on motorisation can be designed so as to compensate for the infrastructure costs and as an economic incentive to reduce external costs. Even though the mineral oil tax currently serves purely fiscal purposes, it could well be seen as a key to policies regarding transportation and the environment. Increasing this tax will cut fuel consumption, which in turn will reduce environmental costs (arising from the emission of CO2 and pollutants); mileage cuts on the part of motorists in turn reduce noise and the cost of congestion and accidents. The mineral oil tax could also serve as a model for a general European toll for all types of roads. To this end, it would be necessary to introduce a uniform tax rate throughout the EU. Congestion problems in agglomerations can be solved by local toll systems (such as a city toll modelled along London's congestion charge).
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