Government's new climate plan inadequate, says Shropshire Green Party

Members of Shropshire's Green Party have said the Government's new climate plan is inadequate.

The Shropshire Green Party have reacted to the Government's 10 Point Climate Plan, and said the total £12 billion spending is just a "fraction" of the £27 billion the Government has announced for new roads.

Oswestry Mayor Councillor Duncan Kerr said: "They say that when you’re in a hole you should stop digging. When you’re faced with a climate emergency, the first step should be to stop fuelling it.

"Bringing forward the date for the phase-out of diesel and petrol vehicles is good news but when you set the whole package in the context of the urgency of the climate and nature emergencies, and the scale of the job emergencies we face, there is nothing like enough boldness and urgency in this package. It fails to rise to the gravity of this moment.

"This announcement gives just £4 billion of new spending, bringing the total to £12 billion, which is around the size of the subsidy the UK Government gives to fossil fuels each year, and a fraction of the £27 billion the Government has announced for new roads."

Mr Kerr also criticised Shrewsbury's proposed North West Relief Road, saying it will bulldoze vital wildlife habitats and "lock in reliance on cars".

Compare

He added: "When you compare the UK’s £12 billion to the level of green stimulus that countries like France and Germany have committed – France £27 billion per annum, Germany £36 billion per annum, we think it tells you that the UK Government doesn’t have the level of ambition that is necessary for this moment."

Hilary Wendt, coordinator of South Shropshire Green Party said: "It is astonishing and disappointing that there were no announcements to tackle emissions from food growing, production, manufacturing, and our diets. The evidence is clear, we can't limit warming to 1.5 degrees or achieve net zero without addressing food.

"Food should be at the heart of a green recovery from Covid-19 and this really matters in a rural county like ours. Growing, manufacturing and buying sustainable food delivers more, better jobs. For instance, if we grew more food using agro-ecological techniques like organic, we could greatly increase biodiversity, produce more of our own fruit and veg, and increase rural employment.

"This kind of investment is greatly needed at the moment, as so many of our local farmers in Shropshire have suffered so badly since the Covid-19 outbreak, and are at further risk from Brexit."

The party said it was hoping for a "genuine green reset", which would re-purpose economic policy so that it prioritises people’s health and wellbeing and environmental sustainability.

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