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JENNY GILRUTH MSP HIGHLIGHTS LEVENMOUTH RAIL ENVIRONMENTAL OPPORTUNITIES
RAIL LINK COULD “SUBSTANTIALLY REDUCE CARBON FOOTPRINT” FOR BUSINESSES
Jenny Gilruth, MSP for Mid Fife & Glenrothes, is highlighting the potential for Levenmouth Rail Link to significantly improve the environmental impact of businesses in her constituency by offering new rail freight services and reducing road traffic.
The 5-mile rail link from Thornton to Leven was closed to passengers in 1969, though was maintained for freight services until 2001. The closure of the line has meant Levenmouth is the largest urban area in Scotland not directly served by rail. The line includes the two former stations of Cameron Bridge and Leven. The Levenmouth Rail Campaign has been campaigning in the Levenmouth area for the reinstatement of the line.
Jenny Gilruth MSP is backing the campaign to restore rail services to Levenmouth, citing the benefits to local businesses such as Diageo. Last week, Diageo’s Cameronbridge distillery in Leven was cited in a briefing published by the European Environment Agency (EEA) as a significant polluter in Europe. The EEA produced the briefing based on analysis of emissions data from Europe’s largest industrial facilities.
Diageo has invested £65millon in building a renewable energy plant at Cameronbridge, using technology to an unprecedented scale in a distillery. While the total organic carbon emissions have significantly decreased in recent years, Jenny Gilruth has stated that the potential for freight distribution my rail could have a substantial impact in further reducing the Leven plant’s impact.
Commenting, Jenny Gilruth said:
“For most of the businesses in Levenmouth, the only option for transporting materials and goods is by road, which inevitably means a significant carbon footprint in emissions.
“A reinstated rail link could offer new freight services to businesses in the local area which would go a long way to making a positive impact on the local environment by reducing traffic and substantially reduce the carbon footprint of local employers. It could also see a reduction in congestion on Levenmouth roads with less HGVs needed for transportation.
“For businesses like Diageo, which is situated right next to the Cameron Bridge station, a rail link would offer a fantastic opportunity to go even further in reducing their emissions.
“This is just one example of how the reinstatement of the rail link could be transformative and hugely positive for the area. The case for reinstatement of the Levenmouth line is clearly overwhelming.”
A petition of 12,500 signatures was delivered to Transport Minister Humza Yousaf MSP on July 1st calling for the reinstatement of the Levenmouth line. The Levenmouth Sustainable Transport Study – Final Stag Report was published by Fife Council in January 2017 in support of the viability of the line.
NOTES TO EDITORS
For more information on the Levenmouth Rail Campaign, please visit:
In June, Jenny Gilruth MSP submitted motion (S5M-05941: “Levenmouth Rail Link”) to the Scottish Parliament calling for a Member’s Debate. The motion text reads:
“That the Parliament notes what it sees as the strong support that the Levenmouth Rail Campaign has achieved; believes this has been demonstrated by it organising a petition that has by signed by over 12,500 residents from the area that calls for the re-opening of the rail link from Thornton to Leven; welcomes the Fife Council report, Levenmouth Sustainable Transport Study – Final Stag Report, which was published in January 2017; understands that this study included a strongly positive cost-benefit analysis for the link and suggested that its re-opening would lead to major economic benefits; believes that, although the Levenmouth area faces high levels of economic deprivation and problems with connectivity, it has substantial opportunities for employment and economic development; considers that this project could help deliver this; understands that passenger numbers on other re-opened services, including the Borders Railway and the Airdrie-Bathgate line have exceeded predictions, and notes the view that a strong case has been made for ministers to give serious consideration to the re-opening of the Levenmouth line for passenger and freight services.”
The briefing from the EEA (dated 9th July 2017) which cites Diageo as a significant polluter can be found here:
Information on the European Environmental Agency (EEA) can be found here:
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