David Marshall: Stroud District Council Canal Manager; “Very many thanks indeed. We will be referring to it within our forthcoming bid for Lottery funding”.
Dr John Newson (technology policy) Director, Community Energy Birmingham Ltd: “This is indeed a valuable and timely report. It should interest the Committee on Climate Change whose advice to government on the UK’s Carbon Budgets to 2037 is due next year.
William Taylor (FFE co-ordinator) “At a Fairness for Farmers in Europe meeting on climate change at the end of this month I will have the opportunity to canvas support for inland waterways”.
- Could hydrogen be an inexpensive non-polluting fuel of the future were it not so inflammable and takes up so much storage space.? Hydrogen fuel cell development still has far to go and is an attractive possibility for the future. (Diana Schumacher co-founder of ELF and much more)
Professor Harris’s prototype barge uses hydrogen in powdered form, ‘metal hydride’, avoiding liquid hydrogen, which like petrol, is extremely flammable. Hydrogen does not pose a weight problem on boats and ships, it simply replaces the ballast which they need. (Editor)
- How cost-effective would a 68’ x 14’ freight craft (the biggest we could accommodate) be, compared with a craft using the Manchester Ship Canal? (David Marshall: Stroud District Council Canal Manager)
68 x 14 could be cost effective but it would depend on the circumstances e.g. if waterside to waterside so no double handling needed. In general terms you need 100 tonnes+ capacity to compete with lorries but smaller can sometimes work. At 500+ tonnes, waterway cost is about 50% of road cost plus waterway toll. (David Lowe, Chair, Commercial Boat Operators Association)
- Will these ideas could be taken up by policymakers now that they have a smidgen more awareness of the environmental crisis? Greg Coombs
National and regional government is convinced of the merits of increasing waterway freight though it does not take concrete steps to make it happen. There are many reports showing this awareness – three listed below (Editor):