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GREENS leader Bob Brown has launched a light rail blueprint for Canberra as part of a plan to establish light rail in cities across the nation.
Senator Brown wants revenue from the mining tax to be diverted into fast rail to link capital cities and light rail in cities to ease congestion.
Senator Brown said the proposal could be funded through a “fair mining tax” or the Future Fund.
“We have the ability in this nation to be nation-building. We want to link the cities of this nation including Canberra with each other through high-speed rail.
“So we are putting together a fantastic and very realistic transport system for this whole nation while the big parties are looking at transporting coal. That's where their billions are going.
“Ours will go into transporting people and that's the difference.”
Senator Brown sidestepped questions about how the losses of new public transport networks would be funded.
“The funding is there but only if governments have got the gumption to make sure that we raise from the wealth of this country a proper income to be able to implement both light rail within the cities and fast rail between the cities,” he said.
“If you want to give away $24 billion per annum in your budget, by backing down from a proper mining royalty, then you will see everything as a loss and all too hard, but not for the Greens. We can see how to fund it.”
Senator Brown said governments were putting tens of billions into super highways which were increasingly clogging cities.
Under the Canberra proposal the Greens would fund a $10 million study into a light rail system.
It would be implemented in three stages and ultimately link the city with the satellite suburbs of Gungahlin and Belconnen to the north, Tuggeranong to the south and the airport and Queanbeyan to the east.
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