The Department of Trade and Industry has released £50m over the next 18 months to support the Low Carbon Buildings Programme. It has chosen seven companies to receive its funding. There is an increasing number of companies that operate in the renewable energy field and that was clearly demonstrated by the fact that 53 companies expressed interest in the DTI grant.
David Miliband, the Environment Secretary, is expected to announce a proposal for carbon "credit cards" for every citizen. People would receive an annual allowance to use on food, travel and energy and it would be possible to buy or sell credit. This, as carbon quotas on businesses, will not be the solution to climate change. It will only enforce the current situation.
According to the Lib Dems, the Conservative's "may have started to talk green but are continuing to act dirty":
- David Cameron switched to a supposedly green hybrid Lexus GS, but it is so big that it is more polluting than the 10 best selling models in the UK.
- The Conservatives were silent or critical during the debate on the recent Finance Bill on fuel duty, vehicle excise duty, climate change levy, land fill tax and aggregates levy. Their year long tax commission did not come up with a single proposal for David Cameron on green taxes, stating that this was "beyond their remit".
David Miliband dismissed the rumours of increasing green taxes that would affect mainly middle-income families on BBC's Sunday AM (05 November). He said that any green taxes would have to be accommodated to the Government's overall approach to taxes and spending.
It is clear that action must be taken to tackle climate change and the Government has committed itself to the fight against global warming. However, it has not yet fully revealed its strategy and seems to consider various options. Mr Miliband mentioned the importance of increasing spending on research and development. Would that mean more support to companies that develop technologies that are consistent with the Government's overall approach? But it is often the case that governments choose the least viable candidate and commit funding to failed projects.
The eagerly awaited Stern Review conveys a clear message – climate change is fundamentally altering the planet; the risks of inaction are high; and time is running out. The Guardian reports that shortly after the launch of the report, David Miliband announced in the Commons that the Government will legislate in the next session to reduce carbon emissions. Reducing emissions is necessary, but it cannot be done by increasing complex Government regulation and incentives.
The what? You really couldn't make it up. According to a Government press release today, there are apparently there are now thirty-nine dedicated "Catchment Sensitive Farming Officers". I'm sure they are doing a grand job, preventing pesticides harming drinking water and that farmers are really grateful for the "local advice and technical support" they are getting.
Or put it another way, I'm sure farmers will see this as yet more interference by busy bodies trying to tell them how to run a farm effectively. Has anyone actually asked them if they welcome it?