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HS2 and road vehicle fuel demand

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According to HS2 Ltd, modal shift to its high speed Y network would mean an annual reduction in car travel ‘equivalent to around 18 million litres of petrol not used’.

HS2 Ltd: the high speed Y network would mean an annual reduction in car travel 'equivalent to around 18 million litres of petrol not used'

The Y network would open about around 2035 (says HS2 Ltd). However, the UK government is planning a ban on new petrol and diesel cars in 2035 “at the latest”.

BBC News, 'Petrol and diesel car sales ban brought forward to 2035

It’s not clear in what years HS2 would be “saving 18 million litres of petrol”, and why HS2 Ltd refer only to petrol. In recent years, nearly half of new cars bought in the UK have been diesel, so the amount of intercity road travel by diesel car must be significant.

(Obviously, considerable amounts of diesel and petrol would be consumed by vehicles in the construction of HS2 itself, but is there any information about the quantities?)

According to the Petrol Retailers Association (PRA), in 2019 UK retail sales of petrol and diesel were 16.2 and 20.8 billion litres respectively.

PRA, UK retail road fuels market 2019

Using the PRA and HS2 Ltd figures, if the high speed Y network had been up and running in 2019, it would have reduced UK automotive petrol consumption that year by 0.11%.

Calculating the road vehicle petrol saving if the HS2 Y network had been open in 2019

Written by beleben

April 18, 2020 at 11:57 am

Posted in HS2

One Response

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  1. […] 18 million litres of petrol not used’. Using the Petrol Retailers Association and HS2 Ltd’s figures, if the high speed Y network had been up and running in 2019, it would have reduced UK automotive […]


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