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ULEZ: The 20 mph speed limits INCREASE pollution by 35%


Reducing the speed of a typical car from 30 mph to 20 mph decreases its mpg by 35%


Having lived in London since I was 6, I have lost a significant fraction of my life to politicised road regulation. This state control ideology endeavours to force us all onto public transport rather than into privately owned vehicles: “You will own nothing and be happy” was not invented by Klaus Schwab.


By a concerned reader


It is way past time for the absurdity of UK road regulation to be exposed for the scam, for the fraud, for the toxic and destructive racket, that it truly is. And it is my great pleasure to have a part in that Exposé. So on behalf of the drivers of this Great Great United Kingdom with the richest and most diverse culture in the entire world, together with the most incompetent ascientific arrogant ossified and destructive bureaucracy in the West – here goes…


Cars are at their most efficient and therefore their least polluting (best mpg) when they are running at around 40-45 mph. They are less efficient, more polluting, more carbon burning (lower mpg) at 20 mph than they are a 30 mph. Therefore reducing the speed limits in cities from 30 to 20 causes more pollution and obviously more congestion since each car spends a longer period of time on the roads.


Here are the figures for a 1986 VW Golf GTi noting the gear changes. The GTi achieves 40 mpg at 30 mph and 30 mpg at 20 mph a reduction of 25% in fuel efficiency caused by the 20 mph speed limit.



Here are some examples from a graphic found on Google images sourced from David Miller on Quora. They show the Honda Civic (which is close to the average in the comparison) achieving 33 mpg at 30 mph and 23 mpg at 20 mph. This is a reduction of 30% in fuel efficiency caused by the 20 mph speed limit.



Here are some Yankee Doodle mobiles which show the same pattern from Oak Ridge National labs Transportation energy data book edition 29 chapter 4. They show an average American car achieving 32 mpg at 30 mph and 24 mpg at 20 mph, a reduction of 25% in fuel efficiency for the lower speed.



So the data above show reductions in fuel efficiency of between 25% and 30% for reducing speed limits from 30 mph to 20 mph in city driving. This means that for each mile travelled the car will burn between 33% (knock off a quarter add back a third) and 37% more fuel in a 20 mph zone than it will in a 30 mph zone (subject to congestion).


“So 20 mph speed limits force urban drivers to burn around 35% more carbon than we would with a 30 mph speed limit.”


That is why I wrote this article. I did not realise the effect was so large.


This is a self inflicted catastrophe for the respiratory health of those living or working or commuting through the 20 mph zones. It increases pollution by 35%It is a self inflicted catastrophe for the economy of the nation, which is buying fuel and burning it for no reason other than the anti scientific politics of forcing people out of private transport onto government controlled public transport.It is quite obviously a disaster for the environment and has no place at all in a society trying to reduce its carbon footprint.


Excessive speed kills kinetically. Excessive speed limitation kills respiratorially, environmentally and economically.


The litany of ascientific, toxic, politicised, life draining road regulation


Regrettably, 20 mph speed limits are not the only backfiring government created road regulation. The first thing that goes wrong when you leave your driveway in the morning is that your car ploughs into a speed bump, designed to destroy the skeletons of people with spinal injuries (anyone over 60 or over 6 ft), and to embarrass those among us with weaker bladders who want to go to the loo but are stuck in a car.


These bumps cause cars to throw away all their forward momentum for fear of losing their suspension (I have replaced mine twice and in a Mercedes it ain’t cheap). Then one has to burn a load of fuel to recover that momentum after the bump. So each speed bump is an insult to environmental sustainability, to respiratory health, to the economy and especially to those waiting for an ambulance, a fire engine or the police. Mind you that is less important these days since 2 out of the 3 emergency services no longer respond in any reasonable sort of time.


Then one gets to the first set of traffic lights which will be as red as a Valentine’s day rose. The reason they will be red is that road regulators (off-fine or whatever their name is) do not understand that keeping cyclists or keeping pedestrians waiting does not burn fuel. But keeping cars waiting does. So they have lights red in both directions at the same time for polluting cars, in order than non polluting pedestrians can stroll across the road at leisure.


They even give these pedestrians a button to press to cause even more pollution. But all of this is pointless because pedestrians are not governed by traffic lights and cross whenever and wherever they wish to cross, God bless them. And so they should because life is about developing your own judgement, not waiting for a red man to turn green and trusting the government.


Then, after all the red light pedestrians have sauntered across the King’s highway, the cyclists (who likewise have a zero carbon footprint – except for the ones who shout and scream at the motorists) have to get across the junction before any of the mega polluting cars. By the time this charade is over, the cars have been waiting perhaps 3x as long as they need to and pollution and congestion is set in stone all over London.


Then one drives a bit further down the road and the Bus has stopped. Not in a pullover like they used to do in the old days. No. No. Quite the opposite. The council have created a platform for bus passengers which  extends out into the Kings Highway and guarantees that all traffic will be blocked when the bus stops. Then someone gets onto the bus who cannot find their oyster card…


Then one makes a right turn into ones favourite shortcut, to save time, money, fuel and the environment and it has been blocked by Hackney council. Then one investigates alternative shortcuts to relieve the congestion in the main routes and save the planet, and one finds that they have blocked too.


In fact absolutely every single shortcut except one is blocked. But the unblocked one does not let you turn left at the end of it (as you need to do) and has a camera to catch you out if you do. There is of course no need ever to stop a left turn on UK roads because we drive on the left.


There is no danger. But this little exercise that amused me one afternoon trying to get from Islington to Hackney made me realise how councils work. They have a committee of car haters, a politburo of polluters, blocking off every possible side street. But that isn’t enough trouble for them to cause you. No they want you to pay them for having the effrontery to try and out smart them (which is not hard). So they force you into an camera controlled fine zone.


Having negotiated the speed bump, the traffic light, the bus stop, the blocked side streets and the no left turn camera fine zone, one might think the ordeal to be over. But one would be wrong and wrong again. So incalculably wrong. Because without any warning at all and with very little signage you enter into a road which is closed but which has the appearance that it is still open. This is known as a hidden fine trap.


You’ve been fined. Before you realise what has happened you have become a criminal. You thought it was OK to continue driving because you were just following the bus that held you up for 5 minutes at the previous stop. But you have been deceived.


It is OK for the bus to go down that road. But is not OK for you to go down that road because you are an Untermensch in the republic of TFL. You are a Zulu in Apartheid South Africa. You are an Ndebele tribesman in Robert Mugabe’s Zimbabwe. You are a white male applying for a job in a woke corporation.


You are a rat running around the back streets, an animal. You are vermin, a pest to humanity. You are the new Rosa Parks. She was not allowed to sit in the white area on the bus. You are not allowed to drive in the public transport area of the road system. You are not good enough for that privilege. You do not deserve to go down that road. There is a long path for you and there is a short path for your betters. Know your place.


Come to think of it – You are not good enough to go into any bus lane either. Because our governments have learned absolutely nothing from the mistakes of the past in demonising certain demographics. Older people, especially older women, and some disabled people cannot go on buses because they accelerate and brake far too quickly for them.


They would be thrown all over the bus. I can just about do it and I am still pretty strong. But many people have to go in cars. These are discriminated against by bus lanes. This is not a joke. A hip fracture can be lethal to an older person and bus drivers do not wait until everyone is seated before they career off in their overweight hybrid dragsters only to jam the brakes on when they plough into the congestion caused by their bus lanes.


But worse than that, London has far too limited road space in the first place. And the idea that one should reserve half of it for say German cars, would be an absurdly inefficient use our historically limited road space. Of course the idea that we should reserve half of it for say buses, is equally inefficient, not to mention discriminatory.


It causes more pollution from the cars and more total pollution and congestion given that bus lanes spend a lot of the day empty. But regrettably even the elites on the buses have to breathe the extra PM10 from the cars that TFL discriminate against. We all breathe that same air you know, whether we have our own exclusive VIP lane, or not.


There is an argument out of principle to boycott buses just as one would boycott a Venue that refused entry to the unvaccinated. Because the busses, although not causing the discrimination, accept it and benefit from it as do their passengers.


When the bus overtakes a series of private vehicles because it has its own exclusive VIP transport system, shame is what we should be feeling. I mean I had not thought of it before writing this. But that is one of the advantages of putting finger to keyboard. Where is the British sense of fair play? How is this institutional queue barging acceptable in Great Britain?


If you say: Oh there are more people on the bus so we should let it go first, then you make it worse by discriminating against the minority in the car in favour of the majority in the bus.


Politicised Road regulation doubles the pollution levels in the capital


If we add up the effect of the 20 mph speed limits, the congestion producing double stop traffic lights, the speed bumps, the no pull in bus stops, the bus lanes and the closed roads, we see that the majority of the congestion and the pollution in London is caused by unhealthy road regulation. And we have not yet covered parking restrictions.


We all know that rather than driving a short distance to the high street, where one cannot park, we have to drive a longer distance to the supermarket, where one can park. This obviously increases journey length and journey time and burns fuel unnecessarily, increasing emissions, pollution and congestion.


Who hasn’t spend ages driving around town looking for a parking space? Every parking restriction other than for strict safety reasons is an abuse of the planet, not to mention the time of the driver the the profit of the businesses he wishes to engage with.


There was a small village in the South West somewhere whose parking meter electronics failed for a month. The high street saw a 50% increase in turnover during that month. why shouldn’t people be permitted to buy from the shops they want to buy from?


If TFL or the councils or the government had any interest in cutting pollution and congestion they would address any one of these issues as a matter of urgency. But by their very existence these abuses of our road system prove the public sector to be a lying parasite.


They are fining us for congestion and pollution that they themselves cause. Indeed parking is the business model for councils and congestion/pollution is the business model for TFL and the government knowingly permits both rackets.


Dangerous, Ineffective and Corrupt


To coin an overused phrase: 20 mph speed limits are neither safe nor effective. They are about as safe and effective as an mRNA vaccination. The one destroys the transport system and respiratory health of city people. The other destroys the circulatory system and genetic, immunological and neurological health of the vaccinated, and thence of all of us through shedding and blood transfusions etc..


The essence of public sector practice hitherto, has been that the private sector pays for what the public sector inadvertently screw up. But this business model has now become much more sinister and corrupt. Having realised that the more they screw up the more money they make. They are now deliberately screwing things up in order to be able to charge us more to fix them. I can see that philosophy leading to the destruction of the cities they administrate.


So to call any city which has 20 mph speed limits, traffic lights red in both directions, speed humps, no bus pull-ins, bus lanes, universal parking restrictions and closed off side streets, an Ultra Low Emission Zone or even a Low Emission Zone is a lie, a fraud and a deception. London is a government curated congestion zone and a government produced pollution zone and there is no way we should pay for that level of malfeasance.

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