Just Mobility

No charge for public transport

What's the problem?

The local public transport is not yet an alternative to individual transportation for many different reasons. Especcially in rural areas public transport often is more expansive and less reliable than the car. Therefore many people wouldn't shift to public transportation even if there would be appropriate timing and connections, because of financial reasons. But due to the individual transports high consumption of ressources this shift certainly is mandatory. The term "free of charge" was deliberatly avoided, since public transport is not for free and must of course be financed.

What's the measure?

As an incentive for the public transport system, journeys will be offered free of charge and at no ticket price. This would also be a social measure, as, percentage-wise, fixed prices place a higher burden on people with low incomes.

What can the implementation look like?

The first step would be to conclude appropriate contracts with the various transport companies. It is of advantage, if these do not pursue any profit interest, as they are in public ownership. In those areas of the transport companies with which a contract is successful, public transport could be free of charge from then on. If a transport company refuses to conclude such a contract at a fair price, expropriation should be sought. Although service, controls, vending machines and more expenses would be eliminated, additional costs of 12 billion €/year are to be expected (source: Die Anstalt, ZDF).

However, these could be counter-financed by other measures, such as the elimination of climate-damaging → subsidies  or climate-damaging weaponry politics. If counter-financing is not possible, a tax increase based on income and property is a socially acceptable option.

How does this work against climate change?

Moving away from individual transport brings many advantages with it. Fewer areas are sealed for roads and parking spaces and fewer resources are used to produce cars. Indirectly, small municipalities also become more capable of acting, also with regard to climate protection, since road renovation is one of the largest items in the current budgets of small municipalities.

Which other effects does the measure have?

Free public transport helps people to be mobile regardless of their financial situation. In this way, people with low incomes are more strongly integrated into society again.

How quickly can this be implemented?

Small-scale test projects are already running. Locally, it could be implemented immediately depending on the transport association.

References towards other measures

This measure conflicts with 365€ tickets. This measure works particularly well when transport companies are in public ownership. Expropriations and buy-backs therefore support this measure.

Problems of social, global and intergenerational justice

The measure counteracts social inequality

Further literature, sources

On the damage of cars to our society:

  1. Claus von Wagner: Die Anstalt - Faktencheck zur Folge vom 7.3.2017 (2017, abgerufen am 21.2.2020)