Greens Deputy Leader Adam Bandt has released a report outlining $48 billion in benefits from a High Speed Rail network on the East Coast.
The report - High Speed Rail: Benefits that add up - commissioned by the Australian Greens identifies a range of benefits, including both direct benefits to HSR users and operators and indirect benefits to society such as fewer accidents, lower greenhouse gas emissions, less air and noise pollution, less congestion on roads and at airports and substantial time savings to users.
"This report shows that High Speed Rail will have billions of dollars in benefits to the economy and society," Mr Bandt said.
"High Speed Rail benefits include timed saved by consumers, congestion savings, accident reduction and pollution reduction."
“The cost of building high speed rail is the equivalent of five years of roads funding, but when the savings identified in this report are taken into account the cost of high speed rail almost halves.”
"Some benefits not quantified in the report include the advantages to regional areas from hosting HSR stations and agglomeration that can occur when effective distances are reduced."
"The report also examines the large benefits to rapidly growing cities like Melbourne and regional areas between Melbourne and Canberra."
"This report is an important to precursor to the Second Phase Report of the High Speed Rail due to be released by the end of the year. The study was a key commitment in the Greens - Labor agreement that underpins my support for the minority government."
"High Speed Rail's time has come. The government now needs to make a clear financial commitment to taking the next steps towards putting High Speed Rail in place."