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Everyone has their own sources of transportation they use to go to work, school, grocery stores, and so forth. Transportation is a vehicle or system of vehicles, such as buses, trains, etc. (Cambridge Dictionary English) for getting from one place to another but there are two types of transportation: Public and Private. Public transport is a system of buses, trains, etc., running on fixed routes, on which the public may travel (Cambridge Dictionary English), while, Private transport, as opposed to public transport, is a transportation service that is not available for use by the general public. (Definition.net) Either of these can be founded in any cities but they have key differences which impact people’s decision on whether they should use public or private transportation. The view of public transportation changing as it gains more popularity due to transportation apps like Uber. Moreover, it has been one of the reasons to help the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions being entered the atmosphere. Though, the auto industry is an important source of income for the economy as well as people being able to give up the comfort of having their own personal car for public transportation for the benefit of the planet. These contrasting arguments led me to create my question: Should public transportation replace private transportation?
The first perspective begins explaining that private transportation has several negative impacts on India. The article is named “City public transportation developments in India” by Jaspal Singh revealing the harmful effects private transportation has on India and their plans for the development of more public transportation systems to improve them. Jaspal Singh is known as an Urban Transport Expert due to having more than 10 years of experience in urban transport and management consultancy. He is currently the Head of the UITP India Office and has been working there since 2003. Though prior to working with UITP, he had created a consultancy firm called Valoriser Consultants, the firm had interacted with companies specializing in Bus Transport, Paratransit, Transport Planning and Intelligent Transport System. He has also been awarded multiple times for these contributions in the fieldwork of public transport and social work. (Biography Trainer)
The harmful impacts that private vehicles like personal cars have created in India such as severe congestion, causing traveling on the streets to take longer and higher per-capita trips. Another section in the article dealing with road accidents recorded that about a total of 501,423 road accidents and 146,133 road accident deaths in 2015; making the average up to be 1,374 accidents and 400 deaths happening every day because of these private vehicles. The next section mentions, Air pollution, which has a great amount of significance on developing countries like India, they had about 1.4 million people died due to air pollution; which had caused about US$ 505 billion towards welfare losses; and US$ 55.4 billion towards labor losses. Their plans to repair this issue are by creating smart cities, revamping bus systems, and metro systems, which they will be investing in more technological advances and use government funding to make these projects come to life. So, that they could lessen the amount of negative impacts that private transportation causes on their country. (Intelligent Transport, 2016)
Now leaving Asia to cross over to Europe, Germany has similar problems of air pollution affecting the country. An article from Global Citizen called “Germany Is Planning Free Public Transit to Fight Air Pollution” mentions the horrid state that Germany’s air quality is to the point that the European Union had threatened the country with a colossal amount of fines if Germany didn’t take any action to change this life-threatening situation as there were concerns that it could impact many German citizen’s health. The Author, Joe McCarthy is a staff writer at Global Citizen, he had studied creative writing at Southern Connecticut State University and currently writes numerous articles about environmental issues and global events. (Global Citizen)
He explains in the article that while Germany did already contain other cheap mass transit options in comparison to the rest of the European Union, according to the Guardian, but that the proposal in planning would be traveling by train, one of their well-known public transportation sources; be free. The plan is supposed to be enacted in five cities in the western part of the country, including in the cities Bonn, Mannheim, and Essen. While the proposal hasn’t been described in detail it’s suggested that the proposal will be involved with subways and other short-distance trains making people more reliant on these sources of transportation then their own personal vehicles to reduce green gas emission. (Joe McCarthy, 2018)
Furthermore, another article supports this point called “Luxembourg makes all public transport free” from CNN has the same plans as Germany with the expectation that all public transport is free. The reasoning for this plan was the fact of all the road congestions the country had built up and the government had hoped that public transport becoming free would change this issue. Andrea Lo, the author of this article had graduated from Oxford Brookes University and has been working as a journalist and has about 8 years of experience in English-language print and digital media. In the article, it states that the average driver spends about 33 hours in traffic jams which were even worse than other cities in Europe like Copenhagen and Helsinki, which have the cities have a similar size in population to the entirety of Luxemburg but the divers had only spent an average of 24 hours. So, by getting rid of the number of drivers on the street by people having a better alternative option could erase the huge amount of congestion the country contains. (Lo Andrea, 2020)
However, its forgotten how much of necessity private transportation with how much it helps a countries economy but also how it brings employment. The article called “Thailand’s Automotive Industry: Opportunities and Incentives” from ASEAN Briefing shows the significance that the auto industry has on its country. The author Vasundhara Rastogi writes editorials and research operations like magazines, websites, tax guides, and client reports for ASEAN. She is commonly known for writing about economic, legal, and regulatory issues to the interest of foreign investors and multinational companies. She also has an MSc in Development Economics from the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS), a BA in Economics from the University of Delhi. (Asia Briefing) She reveals in the article that Thailand is the 13th largest automotive parts exporter and the sixth-largest commercial vehicle manufacturer in the world. Its auto industry takes accounts for approximately 12 percent of Thailand’s economic growth and employs over 500,000 people to work in this industry. If one were to take away our own personal vehicles, then the country would lose one of their important providing economic growth chains and many people would become unemployed. Then Thailand’s economy would possibly lose a lot of its revenue and the government would be forced to pay for the loss of these people’s jobs. (Vasundhara Rastogi, 2018)
In continuation of the issue, an article called “Automotive Industry in Brazil – Statistics & Facts” from Statista similarly emphasizes how the automotive industry is important to its country. The author of the article is Marina Pasquali, the Team Lead Latin America at Statista, Infographics Editor, and Senior Data Researcher. (Linkin)She states in the article that the Brazilian auto industry in 2017 made approximately 60 billion U.S. dollars in revenue. In 2018, the auto industry production of cars and other personal vehicles had made more than five million vehicles, which had created more jobs for their Brazilian citizens. The auto industry has employed about 130,000 people, which if we were to replace all cars with public transportation then these people would lose their jobs further proving the essentiality of private transportation. (Marina Pasquali, 2019)
Though another article describes that private transportation isn’t just impacting the country’s economy and people’s financial stability but it’s out of the cause of their habits and comfortability of having their own personal source of transportation especially those that live in the US. The article is called “The Advantages of Having a Car” from ITSTILLRUNS. The author is Pallab Dutta, he is a writer with about 600 published articles in multiple different sites like ITSTILLRUNS, The Times of India, The Wall Street Journal, The Economic Times, India Abroad, and Gulf News. (Pallab Dutta Blogs) He states that cars are more flexible for people as those that cross states for business don’t need to use their money to travel. Another section in the article deals with how people like a car as their own sign of independence as with public transportation, you are forced to rely on their schedule to travel to wherever you go. Public transportation isn’t very common in states causing people to be forced to rely on a car. The next section deals with medical emergencies and how rural areas that don’t have a lot of ambulance and police cruisers are forced to use cars for serious injuries since public transportation is filled with other people and could worsen the issue or make it too late to the hospital. (Pallab Dutta)
Throughout finding evidence for benefits of both sides of each perspective, I’ve learned more knowledge than I about each side from these articles. Before researching, I was aware of the pollution and damage that our cars cause to our countries and the planet, but I didn’t know the full extent of the problem until reading these articles. Another thing, I learned was that private transportation had more benefits other than people’s comfortability and dependence on cars like the economy impacting the country and being able to provide many people with jobs like in Thailand or Luxemburg. Through the evidence provided to me, I believe that public transportation shouldn’t replace private transportation, however, people should make a more conscious effort to use public transportation when they can. The effort for me to make a more conclusive decision however, I’ll have to be provided more evidence on why public transportation should be able to replace private transportation. So, further research must take place for me to be able to make a final decision and have fact valid and verified articles on both sides of the issue.
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