“How was your Journey today?” New group wants to help you make your journey count

The Better Journey Project is calling for Islanders to make their journeys better for the island environment, the economy and their physical & mental health, starting on next Friday, the 6th May.

The Better Journey Project is a new non-profit organisation focused on encouraging sustainable travel on Guernsey roads, whether on foot, by bike, by bus or car-pooling. The project is not anti-car, it’s about people choosing a better means of travel where it is possible and appropriate to do so.

Committee member Richard Agnelli said, “The ‘Better Journey Day’ is for everyone and will be held on the first Friday of every month, starting on 6th May.  We want to encourage Islanders to make that better choice for themselves. The ‘Better Journey Day’ is an initiative that aims to show islanders that travelling without defaulting to the car can be a normal part of everyday life. The island will need more property development, and that requires a focus on traffic management. Also, with fuel prices and the cost of living rising, this is a great way to save money.”

Mark Smith, committee member, said “This is your ‘Better Journey Day’; make it fun, an adventure; do it with friends, neighbours or colleagues. Maybe share a car, take the bus, cycle or walk together. Take the quieter roads, find a view not noticed before. Start the day with breakfast somewhere or end it with a drink on the way home. Benefit your health and maybe your pocket whilst also doing your bit for the environment.”

Details and a graphic to promote the day can be found at www.betterjourneys.gg/better-journey-day. People can follow on social media #betterjourneys. They can also register and make a pledge about their journeys on the website.

There are two other initiatives are aimed at organisations; a toolkit for Health & Wellbeing/Sports & Social Committees with ideas to encourage their members to travel more sustainably, and a toolkit to help organisations big & small to implement Sustainable Travel Action Plans. Mark added, “With ESG standards now being adopted, and organisations assessing their CO2e emissions and how those might be reduced, our toolkits can help them turn aspirations & plans into actions & results.”

“According to the States Greenhouse Gas Bulletin, in 2019, road transport produced 72,000 tonnes of CO2e; that’s enough one-tonne skip bags to float a 14m wide pontoon from St Peter Port to Herm, which is the same width as the pedestrian crossing at the foot of St Julians Avenue. Let’s do something to reduce that for 2022 and beyond” commented Richard.

Committee member Barrie Duerden said “When considering the big picture of the Guernsey economy, it’s clear we face a demographic time-bomb with more islanders retiring and a shrinking pool of labour as a consequence.  The best way to solve the issue – estimated at £85m each year by Government – is to increase tax revenue. This is best done through having more taxpayers, which means more housing.  This will increase the load on our transport infrastructure unless islanders think about each journey that they make and make it more sustainable.   This would also have benefits for our physical and mental health, we can ultimately reduce the number of car parking spaces and increase our green spaces and safe pedestrianised areas.”

Further details available from www.betterjourneys.gg