The UK Government’s efforts to reduce carbon emissions have met with a major setback due to decrease in cost of motoring and increase in cost of public transport.

Britain had aimed to reduce carbon emissions by 80% by 2020.

However, The Independent records that the cost of motoring has fallen by 13% and the fares of buses and coaches have risen 17% above inflation.

The rises in the costs of running a car have been more than offset by the falling cost of buying and maintaining a car in real terms. The cost of maintenance has also fallen sharply as cars have become more reliable.

Meanwhile, the real cost of public transport continues to increase above the rate of inflation. Regulated fares, including season tickets and off-peak services, increased by an average of 6%. Unregulated fares rose by an even higher average of 7%.

Network Rail, the chief executive Iain Coucher said: “If we want to reduce our carbon emissions, we need to make the most environmentally friendly forms of transport the choice.”

“If we are pricing people away from it, that is probably wrong in the long term,” said Coucher.