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Give us all your money and we'll save the planet by chauffeur driven car

26 Feb 2007 - JG

If ever proof were needed that this government is using the environment debate as a smoke screen to stealth taxes and pushing through their agenda, then just look at how they are acting in their everyday lives. You would think a government overly concerned with the changing climate would be going out of their way to get the public to buy in to the green debate by acting responsibly themselves. But no. The number of miles Ministers are driving each year has risen sharply. And even more worrying, they are making us pay for their luxury travel. Their wage bill has increased from £5.5 million a year to £7.3 million year. The Government Car and Despatch Agency drove 2,394,200 miles in 2004-5 and 2,834,000 in 2005-6.  Never mind saving the planet, it seems our ministers want to see every inch of it, before it goes, by chauffeur driven car. How can ministers justify this amount of car use and why has it increased so much?

How can we trust the government to push so many policies on the back of the climate change debate when there is so much going on in the background and ulterior motives? Road pricing is just another stealth tax, yet we are told in part it is to tackle climate change. We are told the nuclear debate is about climate change, but it is clearly about security of supply and the rising cost of fuel. Taxes on air travel are not about reducing carbon emissions but raising more money for the Brown coffers. I am not saying I disagree with all these policies in principle, what I am saying is that the government should just come clean and stop lying to the electorate about it's motives for raising more money. Though a really quick way to raise more money would be to stop wasting it in the first - and you can start with less chauffeur driven trips.


Organisations: UK DfT

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