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The UK Goes Greyer

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Published on 3rd August 2015

In ten short weeks the new government is well ahead unpicking the last ten years of modest but steady progress on climate change. So far the tax break on clean cars has been abolished and changes made to the standards on zero carbon housing.

Subsidies for the cheapest forms of renewable energy have been scrapped while billions have been put aside for subsidising nuclear energy. And now the Green Deal which was meant to promote home energy efficiency and thus lower fuel bills has also been dumped. Planning laws are being amended almost continuously to make fracking easier following its democratic rejection in Lancashire and sensitive sites are no longer protected. To add to the list the government has decided to lift temporarily the EU ban on using neonicotinoids pesticides that kill bees and other pollinators.

More can be expected as the government demands extra savings from department responsible for the environment viewed by the likes of George Osborne as soft targets.

It was a leading Conservative who first warned that you did not achieve economic prosperity at the expense of the environment. Perhaps the new environment ministers, Liz Truss and Amber Rudd, should start by reading Mrs Thatcher’s speeches to the UN in the eighties.

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