London, U.K. – June 29, 2021 – IMS, a UK-based vehicle and driving data business, and professional services firm KPMG UK have co-authored a new report on the prospects for road-usage charging (RUC) in the UK.
The report, “The Future of Road Pricing,” analyses learnings from U.S. road-usage charging projects, where IMS successfully delivered and operated solutions in multiple U.S. state-wide deployments including Utah, Oregon, Washington and California.
Report author and RUC expert Dr. Ben Miners, Chief Innovation Scientist at IMS, said: “The U.S. is at the forefront of road usage charging, piloting and enacting new methods to generate sustainable transportation revenue while also enabling innovative usage-based telematics services for users of the road network.”
Further, Miners commented that with the UK Government considering different road pricing mechanisms to replace fuel duties as early as 2030, “The Future of Road Pricing” report details the three major trends that will drive this change – the increasing penetration of zero emission vehicles which will lead to a decline in fuel duty revenue, the growing congestion and vehicle miles travelled by passenger and freight vehicles, and the demand from customers for greater interoperability of road pricing schemes.
“Today, the UK road pricing landscape has a plethora of traditional tolling, congestion charging, and air quality schemes which are not yet interoperable or integrated,” said Miners. “Fortunately, the UK is in an optimal position to benefit from both the mistakes and successes of others as it considers the future of these schemes to address its policy objectives.”
Alternate road pricing programmes in the U.S. have relied on distance-based models with multiple enacted deployments, driven primarily by the need to replace fuel duty and Vehicle Excise Duty. Some themes that are highlighted as “lessons learned from the U.S. experience” with specific examples from states like Utah, Oregon, Washington, and California, include:
- Flexibility and iteration: Across these deployments, providing flexibility and choice – for example, on information-sharing provisions, has been instrumental in securing public approval. Meanwhile, live pilots and demonstrations have helped to validate and iterate policies and the flow of funds from vehicle owners to government agencies.
- Collaboration:Collaboration and information sharing between government agencies and between public and private entities have helped to enable the success of RUC. Coalitions have been established among policymakers, technology providers, operators, and community representatives to share information and perspectives.
- Engagement:Early and frequent engagement with the public through public information sessions and clear communications of plans have helped secure public approval and align environmental, fiscal, equity and privacy objectives. Topics have included interoperability between distance-based schemes and existing urban congestion zones or traditional tolling infrastructure, the regulation or enforcement of road user charges, and concerns about the rural-urban divide.
In the report, co-author Malini Bose, Manager, Mobility 2030, for KPMG UK, builds on these lessons in the UK’s unique context, to emphasise five key considerations for the UK:
- A phased, iterative approach is critical to a successful rollout, with clear communication of the national policy vision and the linkages to Zero Emission Vehicle (ZEV) policy;
- Like in the U.S., a combination of time-of-day, cordon, and distance-based pricing schemes will likely be needed to deliver policy outcomes;
- A distance-based road pricing programme or the upscaling of cordon/time-of-day pricing would require investments in technology and roadside infrastructure, and an assessment of the relative costs and benefits of different solutions;
- During development of any scheme consultation with the public would be needed in respect of concerns around privacy of data and consideration of equity issues for low-income groups dependent on car use; and
- As customers and operators demand greater integration and interoperability, the government will have to consider whether to move to a more regulated and/or centralised regime.
“The economic, fiscal, and environmental case for road pricing is gaining momentum,” said Bose, “but to implement road pricing effectively, the Government will have to make the case with the UK public, put communities at the centre of design, take the best from what other countries have done, and be prepared to iterate based on consultations and demonstrations.”
A full copy of the report “The Future of Road Pricing” is available for download at: https://ims.tech/resources/the-future-of-road-pricing/
About IMS (Insurance & Mobility Solutions)
IMS (Insurance & Mobility Solutions) is a vehicle and driving data business, delivering enterprise solutions to over 350 customers including insurers, mobility operators and governments. IMS recently launched its Vehicle Data Exchange, which enables the IMS DriveSync platform to ingest and process data from any source – from OEM embedded units to smartphones and aftermarket hardware. The company, with offices in the UK, Europe and North America, has analysed over 15 billion driving miles and its algorithms are fed by trillions of data points every hour. More info at www.ims.tech.
About KPMG UK
KPMG LLP, a UK limited liability partnership, operates from 21 offices across the UK with approximately 16,000 partners and staff. The UK firm recorded a revenue of £2.3 billion in the year ended 30 September 2020.
KPMG is a global organization of independent professional services firms providing Audit, Legal, Tax and Advisory services. It operates in 147 countries and territories and has more than 219,000 people working in member firms around the world. Each KPMG firm is a legally distinct and separate entity and describes itself as such. KPMG International Limited is a private English company limited by guarantee. KPMG International Limited and its related entities do not provide services to clients.
Media Contact: Ben Welsh at Certus Communications on 07568 382040