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Why there are calls to slash speeds to 30km/h on some roads

Ross and Russel & Neil Mitchell
Article image for Why there are calls to slash speeds to 30km/h on some roads

There’s a push to reduce speed limits on urban roads shared by cars, cyclists and pedestrians to 30 kilometres an hour as part of a bid to cap vehicle emissions to zero by 2035.

The idea has been put forward in a report by the Grattan Institute, which also calls for cleaner petrol and lower emissions vehicles.

Transport and cities program director at the Grattan Institute, Marion Terrill, says many international cities already have 30km/h speed limits in shared zones.

“Right around the world a lot of cities, Paris is the latest, are reducing their speeds in shared zones to 30km/h,” she told Ross and Russel.

“The reason for it is twofold: partly because it’s safer and also because of tail pipe pollution.”

Ms Terrill said “several hundred Australians” die from tail pipe emissions every year.

She says improving the quality of petrol in Australia would also make a huge difference to health.

“We should … just catch up to the rest of the world and regulate the petrol more closely,” she said.

“Not only would we get less of these harmful tail pipe pollutants but we’d also import better cars because sometimes the manufacturers at them moment have have to detune cars for the Australian market because the petrol is so bad.”

Press PLAY below to hear more about the bid to cut speeds

Dr Ben Beck, head of sustainable mobility and safety research at the school of public health at Monash University, said it was a fantastic idea.

“We have this wonderful opportunity to transform our streets into healthy and safe environments,” he told Neil Mitchell.

Press PLAY below to hear his thoughts

Ross and Russel & Neil Mitchell
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