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Sydney-Newcastle freight line: more to do to keep on track

Media Release
Lee Rhiannon 8 Dec 2011

Progressing the Northern-Sydney Freight Rail project is good news for parts of NSW but federal transport Minister Anthony Albanese needs to throw his weight behind other freight rail projects across the state if the federal government is to win its stripes for expanding freight rail projects, says Greens Senator for NSW Lee Rhiannon today.

“We urgently need more freight on rail travelling through Port Botany, over the Blue Mountains and on rural branch lines,” Senator Rhiannon said.

“It is unacceptable that it has taken four years to activate funding already allocated for the Northern Sydney freight corridor, but yesterday’s announcement is positive for motorists and the environment.

“Minister Albanese must turn around a situation where roads receive the lion’s share of funding in NSW, while rail freight projects limp behind.

“Building infrastructure to move more freight by rail through Port Botany, set to see a 70 percent increase in trucks over the next decade, is clearly a priority.

“The rail track through the Blue Mountains needs upgrading to increase its freight capacity and take longer and heavier trucks off the Great Western Highway.

“Rejuvenating rural branch lines should also be a key project for the federal government.

“Rural branch lines have been left to rot by the former NSW Labor government, while B-double trucks have taken over rural roads risking lives and shifting costs to local councils of road repairs,” Senator Rhiannon said.

 

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