GB No. 3(22)/96
In October 1994, the Ministry of Transport and Maritime Economy in Poland prepared a document entitled "Transport Policy". It is "an action aimed at transforming transportation into a system in line with the requirements of a market economy and the new conditions for economic cooperation in Europe". NGO's were not given this document for review through official channels.
The degree of agreement between the "Transport Policy" document and principles of sustainable development is unsatisfactory. "Transport Policy", in shaping the future structure of the transportation system does not take into account:
Apart from the weakness in not following the concept of sustainable development of transport, there was also some methodological incorrectness. First, the program of building the highways network was developed and approved, then the act about its realization was adopted. And only after that was the concept of transport policy accepted by the government. Consequently, the program of motorways network construction in Poland has imposed its solutions to governmental transportation policy, and has obstructed the adoption of new solutions.
It is vital that an alternative transportation policy, implementing the principles of sustainable development, is prepared for three reasons. Firstly, because of non-conformance to the principles of sustainable development. Secondly, significant conditions are not being taken into account. Thirdly, no other options for development of a transport system in Poland were developed.
The Institute for Sustainable Development in Warsaw (Poland) has started the work of the idea of an "Alternative Transport Policy in Poland", which is based on sustainable development criteria. The goal of this project is to provide the complete scenario for developing a pro-ecological transport system in Poland.
The objectives are as follows:
The work on the "Alternative Transport Policy in Poland" shall be executed by a team of authors and consultants, headed by Mr. Andrzej Rudnicki, Director of the Institute of Roads, Railroads and Bridges of the Cracov University and Chairman of the Transportation Commission of the Polish Ecological Club. Representatives of various interest groups shall be invited to critically examine the proposals. Their views shall be included in the published report.
The final version of the "Alternative Transport Policy" and the English translation will be printed at the beginning of the next year. The report will be the subject of a campaign being developed by the Polish Ecological Club as well as other environmental organizations.
What are the real possibilities of implementing our alternative solutions and convince the Polish government to use our report as a basis for the state transport policy?
It should be said, that the hope that it will succeed is very poor. The pro-motorization attitude of successive Polish governments has brought in negative effects. This threatens Poland with a repetition of errors committed by the countries of Western Europe, but in accelerated form.
Influential Western groups (governments, corporations, financial institutions) are forcing us into a trap of traditional transportation policy to their desire to export solutions maintaining their economies, especially in the realm of fuel and motorization. It is easy to notice that many Polish politicians are susceptible to the propaganda of Western financial and industrial circles.
Institure for Sustainable Development
tel. 48 22 646-05-10
reprinted from POLICY MATTERS, no.2