Green Party in England & Wales
Greens hail 'Green Living Iniative' as step in the right direction
"The Green Alliance are right to call for an integrated package of measures
linking tax incentives to clear information and and advice, in order to
raise public awareness of environmental concerns and ways in which to tackle
"We welcome any ideas like this. The Green Party have long called for Green
taxes and other such incentives to encourage householders to make the right
choices. We would, however, go further, applying much of the same rationale
to transport -road transport alone contributes more than one fifth of the
UK's greenhouse gas emissions.
"This report highlights the crucial role government could and should play in
'greening' our lives, and recognises the need to engage households to
achieve environmental goals.
"Only last year, we saw what Green Cllrs in Kirklees achieved in promoting
energy efficiency through council regulations - all new public buildings in
the area are now required to have some renewable energy sources - rising to
a minimum of 30% by 2011.(1)
"The report also highlights the need for combined, comprehensive efforts to
raise awareness and so change behaviour around pressing environmental
issues, specifically linking fiscal measures such as council tax reduction
for households that insulate their lofts with wider information about the
need for energy efficiency.
"However, providing clear information on crucial issues like this does not
seem to be this government's forte - the DTI's 'Public Energy Consultation'
currently underway seems set to ensure, in the tradition of GM Nation, that
the public receive biased and inadequate information regards energy sources.
"Also, it is essential for many of the measures proposed that there is a
supporting infrastructure in place. Again, this is not one of the
government's strong suits, as clearly demonstrated in its attitude to
transport. The Prime Minister insists that tackling climate change is one of
his priorities, but pushes ahead with relentless expansion of the aviation
and road industry whilst the cost of travelling on public transport is
continually rising. Passengers currently face ridiculous choices - £110 for
a train ticket from London to Edinburgh or £39 by plane. This does
not encourage environmentally friendly choices.