The right to mobility

Published on 04/05/2022 by PCF

The “Mobilities” collective in PCF has met approximately every two months for several years. More than 50 members attended in the last period, and each meeting gathered about twenty people. We deal with all modes of transport, from walking to train, car, bicycle, public transport, …

The transport sector has historically been heavily invested by communist militants, who are present in large numbers among the employees of transport companies. Our collective includes activists interested in these issues, employee activists in transport companies, in particular SNCF and RATP, federal officials and elected officials responsible for mobility at different levels of community. I am the administrator of Île-de-France Mobilités, as is Pierre Garzon, co-host of the collective. Fabien Guillaud-Bataille, also administrator of the IDFM, attends very regularly, as do Jean-Luc Gibelin, vice president in charge of transport for the Occitanie region, or Cyril Cineux, deputy mayor of Clermont-Ferrand and specialist in free transport.

An important moment for our collective was the development of PCF’s contribution in 2017 to the law on mobility orientation, a structuring law for state policy. Our party was the only one with the Greens to make a contribution to this debate. We also fed Fabien Roussel’s campaign by developing proposals to be able to travel without polluting.

The transport sector in France is today the first carbon-emitting sector where climate change is a direct consequence. In addition, the public health issue: Transport is one of the main emitters of atmospheric pollutants, causing 40,000 deaths a year across the country. In addition, travel occupies a prominent place in our daily lives: the French spend more than an hour a day and 15% of their income traveling.

In this context, we defend the right to mobility as a fundamental means of liberation for all, regardless of income level or place of residence. Also, the responses to the environmental emergency must combine social and ecology: the end of the world, the end of the month, the same struggle. We defend the need for the state to invest massively to facilitate access to the least polluting modes of transport.

We therefore propose to invest an additional 15 billion euros each year to improve and develop the transport infrastructure. The aim is to modernize and develop the railway network, from high-speed lines to fine service lines in the area, to develop a network of 100,000 km of cycle paths throughout the country to facilitate daily cycling over short distances and create € 10,000 assistance for the acquisition of less polluting cars. In parallel with these investments, we propose to set aside an additional 10 billion a year to introduce free public transport in all urban areas, reduce the price of train tickets by 30% and guarantee that 50% of the return journeys are covered.-work in TER.

Our originality in this debate is to propose clear financing solutions. We propose a heavy taxation of private jet travel and large luxury cars, which are among the most polluting modes of transport and reserved for the ultra-rich. We also propose to tax activities that promote car use, such as parking spaces for hypermarkets and offices. Finally, we believe that the offices of the country’s richest cities and territories should be taxed much harder: When a company chooses to pay 4 times more for its premises along the Champs-Élysées for prestige, it has ample funds to contribute to national solidarity and the development of smaller polluting transport.

Jacques Baudrier

PCF Mobility Collective

Leave a Comment