England and Wales Green Party
Greens condemn Tory eco-stunt
Green Energy Works Campaign will provide "genuine opportunity" to engage the public merely a pointless gesture
As part of the Tories determined publicity drive, David Cameron yesterday called on the Conservative Shadow Cabinet to publicly switch from gas to renewable energy suppliers and invited attending journalists to sign up over the internet.
Keith Taylor comments: "While I welcome any initiative seeking to encourage the public to switch from gas to renewable energy suppliers, the Tories latest eco-stunt seems remarkably like a superficial attempt to distract attention from the ongoing, very 'ungreen' policies of the Conservative Party.
"The Tories have never had a good track record on green issues, always favouring the demands of big business over the need for ethical and sustainable development. David Cameron used his acceptance speech to call for a major new road building programme and has firmly committed the party to lobbying for the next generation of nuclear power stations, against the advice of new recruit to his policy advisor team, environmentalist Zac Goldsmith.
"In contrast, the Green Energy Works campaign, to be launched on Thursday 19th January in Lambeth, is based on a serious and enduring commitment to environmental issues. The Green Party have consistently called for greater use of renewable energy sources as part of our commitment to realistically tackling climate change."
Councillor Andrew Cooper, leading the campaign, said: "In the UK, progressive councils such as Kirklees and Woking have shown that with energy-saving measures and small-scale renewables, such as wind turbines and solar panels, homes and workplaces can become self-sufficient or even net exporters of electricity, and can dramatically reduce their carbon dioxide
emissions. Now we need to see real leadership from central government on these issues.
"Current targets for renewable energy are spectacularly unambitious. By 2010 the government is aiming for just 10 per cent of electricity generation in the UK. Across Europe the target is 22 per cent and with a converted programme of investment in new technology we could do even better than that.
"The Greens want the public to use their consumer power to send a message to the government that they can't ignore - that we want more investment in energy-saving and renewable energy, not more nuclear power stations."