Flybe problems - did they take rail improvements into account?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by hwl, 14 Jan 2020.

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  1. Djgr

    Djgr Member

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    Isn't climate change a real pest then? Unless sustainability is tackled then you can wave goodbye to meaningful economic growth
     
  2. class26

    class26 Member

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    Yes but our rails system is full. If HS2 isn`t built or something similar (and tinkering at the edges will not give the passenger uplift anything like HS2) then we will be forced into our cars on an already jammed motorway system. Sitting in traffic jams belching out co2 isn`t exactly environmentally friendly. HS2 is a far better bet from this perspective I would have thought.
     
  3. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

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    Indeed it would. But the number of passengers on Newquay flights are such a tiny proportion of the capacity of a high speed line that the benefit of carrying them would be similarly tiny. Including or excluding this group isn't going to make any difference to whether the line is worth building, or whether to make it longer to serve Newquay directly when new infrastructure further east would benefit Newquay-London journeys and also many others.
     
  4. devonexpress

    devonexpress Member

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    Well that's a lie. I think i'm just going to not post on here for a bit, to many big headed know it alls.
     
  5. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Perhaps post evidence of the price being higher?
     
  6. furnessvale

    furnessvale Established Member

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    I looked in vain for any evidence that airlines in the UK pay any excise duty or VAT on fuel.

    I found plenty that, while rail can use rebated fuel not being on a road, it still pays in excess of 10p per litre excise duty, a not inconsequential amount given the millions of litres consumed annually.
     
  7. Greybeard33

    Greybeard33 Established Member

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    Air Passenger Duty (APD) was intended to compensate, to some extent, for the lack of taxation on aviation fuel. However, reportedly the Government is giving Flybe a "holiday" from APD payments as part of the rescue deal.
     
  8. LNW-GW Joint

    LNW-GW Joint Veteran Member

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    Quoting from a recent House of Commons briefing paper on taxing aviation fuel: https://researchbriefings.files.parliament.uk/documents/SN00523/SN00523.pdf
     
  9. InOban

    InOban Established Member

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    It's a subsidy to international trade and travel that ships and aircraft pay very little tax on their fuel.
     
  10. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Which is a bad thing. Shipping stuff half way round the world (and ships are some of the worst polluters) when it could be produced locally instead is to be deprecated. Unless of course we could see a resurgence of sail?
     
  11. BigCj34

    BigCj34 Member

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    I was meaning that, infrastructure improvements that benefit the bigger cities on the way help Newquay. I'm not suggesting any new high speed line needs to be built (presumably there is no capacity constraint unlike the WCML) but there could be room for upgrades on the existing lines to improve journey times.
     
  12. furnessvale

    furnessvale Established Member

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    Not really. It is the simple fear by all governments that to unilaterally impose a tax would drive traffic to an adjacent country.

    This was the thinking behind the SNPs idea of abolishing APD in Scotland. Nothing to do with increasing Scottish trade per se, but everything to do with abstracting long distance traffic from the adjacent rUK.
     
    Last edited: 19 Jan 2020
  13. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

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    That is the reason, but the result is a subsidy to long-distance aviation and shipping.
     
  14. InOban

    InOban Established Member

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    I think that there's an international treaty which makes it illegal.
     
  15. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    If there is it needs binning off urgently.
     
  16. Meerkat

    Meerkat Established Member

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    Give Greta a bell

    I would imagine China would ensure it never happened!
     
  17. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    :)

    In particular, shipping needs an incentive to pack in burning bunk oil.
     
  18. The Ham

    The Ham Established Member

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    If you look at the land take for Heathrow Airport it's 1,227ha with about 39 million passenger departures a year (78 million passengers). That works out at 31,785 passengers per Hectare.

    Now if you look at the land ownership it's 52,000ha with about 1.8 billion departures. That works out at 34,615 passengers per Hectare.

    As such, even with the very lightly used branch lines, it would appear that general rail beats Heathrow in terms of capacity for land use.

    Now given that HS rail isn't going to have those rural branch lines dragging the numbers down then the efficiency of it compared to air travel is likely to be significant. That's on a surface travel mode vs flying where there vast majority of travel is done whilst not in contact with the ground or interfacing with anything built on the ground.
     
  19. InOban

    InOban Established Member

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    In particular, shipping needs an incentive to pack in burning bunk oil.
    I believe it now is banned, since the start of the year. I'm sure someone else will know.
     
  20. BigCj34

    BigCj34 Member

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    So if there is more land infrastructure with aviation (plus let's not access roads and railways), which genuinely costs more to operate per passenger? Is rail still higher?
     
  21. The Ham

    The Ham Established Member

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    Even with an aircraft which is comparable to cars that's still higher than rail travel.

    What are your sources for how any aircraft is comparable to a car in terms of CO2e emissions?

    Then how does that compare to rail?

    Then how does air travel continue to improve, bearing in mind that significant numbers of rail passengers are carried by EMU's which are powered by a rapidly greening power generation system?

    Even then rail is significantly higher than walking/cycling.

    The problem is that with a growing population (either at a local level within the UK or worldwide) that to stand still on emissions we've got to:
    a) travel less
    b) travel using much greener modes of travel
    c) reduce the emissions of the travel which we are doing
    d) carbon offsetting
    e) mix of the above

    Rail does well on b and c and can even be part of the answer with a. In comparison air travel does badly on all options, with the possible exception of d.

    However carbon offsetting generally only works where there's easy wins in terms of helping others cut their emissions, as time goes on that's going to get harder (read more expensive) to do. As such it's likely to be a short term option.

    Since 1990 what had the emissions of the UK done and how has aviation contributed to this?

    From what's generally available it would appear that UK emissions have fallen, however aviation's emissions have doubled (i.e. the fall would have been much bigger if we weren't flying as much). Unless there's information which can be cited and ideally sources provided which provides evidence which is different to this.

    The evidence for aviation's emissions doubling is from here (p9 of the PDF, P8 as labeled on the pages):
    https://assets.publishing.service.g...ta/file/787488/tsgb-2018-report-summaries.pdf
     
  22. The Ham

    The Ham Established Member

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    The cost to operate rail/air is going to be a difficult one to find an answer for. The big advantage airports have over the rail network is that if someone needs to cut the grass is all very local to where they are. If there's a problem with the railways the distance required to travel to go and fix something can be quite big.

    However the fact that some railway land can be little more than scrub, whilst airports need to be much more controlled landscaping would compensate for some of that difference.
     
  23. jkkne

    jkkne Member

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    Flybe is relatively unique in that it serves a lot of places that simply aren’t feasible to take the train between. Unlike BA it doesn’t have a transit model to follow and easyJet tends to focus on major cities.

    I guess it depends where you’re based and where you’re travelling for the train to work for you. Certainly I now prefer the train to London over BA but that’s a one off case as it’s the only place that Newcastle has a decent connection to (aside Edi and Glasgow)

    I commute a lot between Newcastle and Cardiff and Southampton. As much as I’d love to spend 11 hours return on a Cross Country train no amount of flight shaming will keep me from boarding that jetstream plane.

    hell if there was a Newcastle to Manchester flight I’d take it versus nigh on 3 hours each with TPE.
     
  24. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Appears there has indeed been a reduction:
    http://www.imo.org/en/MediaCentre/HotTopics/Pages/Sulphur-2020.aspx

    ...but shipping is still dirty and much of it unnecessary as the product could be made locally.
     
  25. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

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    Interesting thought that implicit subsidies for long-haul flights and shipping must act to some degree as an incentive for "offshoring" in preference to keeping work local.
     
  26. Bletchleyite

    Bletchleyite Veteran Member

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    Less so for clerical offshoring I would think. What needs to heavily reduce is (a) food miles (if we can produce it in the quantities required we should not import it, and we should only import what we cannot produce), and (b) product miles (again, manufacture locally). I reckon you could take half those ships out of the sea in a stroke.
     
  27. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

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    I don't know how realistic it is to bring manufacturing back from China in large quantities and Brexiters appear to assume that we should trade with more distant partners instead of those closer to home. But removing any unfair subsidy has got to be a good thing. Offshoring of clerical work does require some personal contact - a relative used to work in the web team for a retailer and it seemed to need quite a bit of visiting to and from the country where the "grunt work" was done.

    But unless we expect Flybe to save itself by offering flights in small turboprops to little-known Chinese cities, this is getting well off-topic...
     
  28. modernrail

    modernrail Member

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    I had some chats with some folks over the weekend that suggested we are closer to short haul electric flights than we think. Possibly also hydrogen.

    The Flybe network is the perfect first network for an electric fleet. It is not quite time yet but let's say we can accelerate development through designating it a priority sector and offering support to development.

    It has to be said that IF electric/hydrogen flights can be made to work, as much as I love using the train, there is a massive argument to say this would be a great thing for regional connectivity. The cross country rail network and stock is poor. Even with better, longer trains, journey times from say Cardiff to Newcastle are always going to be poor. Environmentally and economically, a domestic electric flight network would be very interesting indeed.

    One of those I spoke to also said they should put a planning condition on the new runway/terminal at Heathrow that it is electric only. Interesting thought.
     
  29. JamesT

    JamesT Member

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    Food miles is an overly simplistic measure. Depending on the methods of production, food shipped in from overseas can actually be greener than that produced locally. The stereotypical example is things like tomatoes where they require a heated greenhouse in our climate, but can be grown naturally elsewhere. https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2008/mar/23/food.ethicalliving
     
  30. edwin_m

    edwin_m Veteran Member

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    Something like the various Scottish island flights could be an early application for electric aircraft, as they are short and the Scottish government could make the subsidy conditional on zero emissions.

    For wider application I think the question is how many people actually travel between Newquay and Edinburgh (or their respective surroundings) and similar routes, and currently either fly or use the train. My hunch is not many more do than the aircraft capacity currently provided - after all Flybe is quicker and often cheaper than the train today, and there's no reason they couldn't run more or larger flights tomorrow if the demand was there. Most of the people on CrossCountry will be making shorter journeys where air isn't a good alternative because there is no convenient airport and/or the extra time to/from/in the airport cancels out the saving when in the air. Whatever their power source aircraft will also be limited by capacity of runways and air corridors particularly in the South East, as well as concerns about noise and possibly energy consumption even if electric.
     
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