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YEPP Resolution: Resolution on Transit Traffic

Adopted at the YEPP Seminar in Budapest, Hungary on February 25 2012 Recognizing:  the adoption of the “Eurovignette” directive by the European Parliament on 7th June 2011 and the European Council on 12th September 2011 after three years of discussion. The charging of heavy goods vehicles over 12 tons for the use of certain infrastructures is now allowed.  the second reading in the European Parliament on reform of the directive to establish a single European railway area planed for summer 2012.  that YEPP has already dealt with the issue of European transit and its impact on the environment and citizens of the affected regions. Acknowledging, that:  YEPP has pledged for a concept of “modal shift” in the transport sector, which contributes to the development of an environmentally friendly transport system by supporting railway (working paper on transport adopted at YEPP Seminar January 2007 in Rotterdam)  freight traffic augmented enormously in the recent years due to the common market. The alpine region is specifically affected due to its geographical location in the middle of Europe.  in 2010 for example a total volume of 9.78 million trucks have crossed the Alpine border regions and the volume is increasing year by year.  the free movement of goods is a fundamental principle of the EU primary law and one of the core values of the common market.  the exchange of goods is a fundament of our economy. It is necessary for a functioning and healthy market and the development of the Alpine region and its population itself.  the public and the environment close to the transit routes suffer from the stresses and strains caused by freight traffic. Air and noise pollution caused mainly by the transportation of goods on our roads, has an enormous impact on the quality of life of people leaving close to important transit routes.  environmental costs are usually not carried by the polluter, but by the public.  the financing of environment protection through the polluter pays principle is economically the most reasonable. The actual costs including direct and indirect costs through resource consumption, production and transport are taking into account by the polluters. 1

the noise pollution of rail traffic due to lack of modernization of the transport system is considerable.

YEPP calls on the EU and its Member states: 

to fully implement the “Eurovignette” directive especially in environmentally sensitive areas as the Alps and use the resulting additional revenues, especially for the improvement of existing infrastructure and the development of transport networks.

to approve the directive to establish a single European railway including measures for common safety rules and environmental protection.

to take appropriate measures to reduce environmental pollution caused by busy roads. Noise barriers near houses, silent asphalt and traffic control systems to prevent congestion and to reduce emissions from transport.

to take into account the environmental pollution caused by trucks with low euro classes when calculating the road charges, thus creates an incentive for trucking companies to keep their truck fleets up to date.

to coordinate between members states the different systems of road charges, so that it does not pay off to take other routes than the direct way in order to avoid to drive around the main routes.

to take care of sensitive areas with a larger impact of pollution on the environment. Such areas as the Alps should be protected and new motorway projects in such areas should be reconsidered.

to further expand environmentally friendly systems such as rail and water traffic.

to realize the Brenner Base Tunnel part of the Trans-European Transport Networks (TEN-T) line 1 from Berlin to Palermo, as quickly as possible, including all the infrastructure which is needed.

to bring forward the research of new technologies to improve energy efficiency and environmental compatibility of vehicles.

to take care that new and existing roads are characterized by a high environmental compatibility and low visual impact on the landscape.

that railway networks will be overhauled and fitted with soundproof walls near houses, so that the noise is reduced.

to take into account the noise effects caused by rail vehicles in the calculation of the charges for the use of railway infrastructure. Louder waggons, especially obsolete waggons for the transportation of goods, should pay more as they produce higher environmental costs.