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Swiss still in love with their cars

Three out of four Swiss cannot live without their cars, despite having access to one of the world's best public transport networks.

This content was published on April 17, 2008 - 21:04

However, the survey published on Thursday by the gfs.bern research institute also found that 80 per cent of the population realised cars had a negative impact on the environment – a nine per cent increase on a similar poll in 2005.

Two-thirds of those questioned said they could imagine buying a less-polluting car in future, and 88 per cent favoured financial incentives to encourage purchases of green vehicles.

A large majority said they thought the automobile industry was not doing enough to reduce carbon dioxide emissions.

The poll found that every second person sits behind the wheel of his or her car at least once a day and 60 per cent drive more than 100 kilometres a week. Both of these figures were down slightly compared to the 2005 survey.

Also on Thursday, a study was released with recommendations on how to reduce the chronic traffic jams around Zurich.

The document, commissioned by the bank, Zurich Kantonalbank, said the traffic problems were expected to increase as more jobs were created attracting more people to the region.

The cost to the local economy in time lost on roads would double from between SFr80 – SFr140 million ($79.5 million - $139 million) today to between SF$180 million and SFr300 million by 2025.

The study suggested that in order to ease the congestion the current road network would have to be expanded, and fees or a "road pricing" system introduced to make drivers think twice before taking their car to work.

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