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Buckingham Liberal Democrats

Where do the Liberal Democrats stand on the environment?

April 11, 2018 7:59 PM

You are not likely to hear the answer to this in the mainstream media. Because there are so few LibDem MPs, the party's voice in Parliament is rarely heard, and its views seldom reported.

So on the major environmental issues of the day, climate change, air pollution, plastic waste on land and sea, most voters have little idea of our policies. Those who voted for us, and studied our literature in elections, will have a rough idea where we stand, which is generally ahead of the other main parties on these subjects.

Flood protection(Photo: more extreme weather, with flooding and heatwaves, a predicted consequence of climate change.)

I found a very useful analysis online, in a blog by LibDem councillor Andy Boddington (http://andybodders.co.uk/2017/06/01/general-election-2018-how-green-is-thy-manifesto/)

Andy examined the parties' statements on the environment in their 2017 election manifestoes. This, obviously, was the last time the parties set out their environmental wish lists in any detail.

"To find a real green agenda you need to look to the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party" he concludes. You can read for yourself what the Greens advocated. Of the Lib Dems he notes these aspirations:

The Lib Dems want

* a Zero-Carbon Britain Act to set new legally binding targets to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2040 and to zero by 2050.

This is his more detailed summary of what the LibDem manifesto says about climate change and green energy.

Climate Change and Environment

[Would enact]:

Green Transport Act.

Zero-Waste Act.

Zero-Carbon Britain Act to set new legally binding targets to reduce net greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2040 and to zero by 2050.

Ambitious carbon capture and storage programme. Play a leadership role in international efforts to combat climate change.

Green Buildings Act to set energy-efficiency targets, including every home to reach at least energy rating Band C by 2035. At least four million homes to be Band C by 2022; priority given to fuel-poor households.

Restore the zero-carbon standard for new homes and extend it to non-domestic buildings by 2022.

Nuclear Power

New nuclear power stations have role, provided concerns about safety, disposal of waste and cost are addressed, new technology is incorporated, and there is no public subsidy for new build.

Fossil Fuels

Oppose fracking. Cut fossil fuel imports. Assist areas heavily dependent on fossil fuel industries to diversify away.

Green Energy and Efficiency

Saving energy a top infrastructure priority. Expand renewable energy, aiming for 60% of electricity from renewables by 2030. Restore government support for solar PV and onshore wind in appropriate locations.

Build more electricity interconnectors to underpin reliance on renewables. Invest in cutting-edge technologies including energy storage, smart grid technology, hydrogen technologies, offshore wind and tidal power.

Give go-ahead for Swansea Bay tidal lagoon.

Reduce energy bills by improving home insulation and encouraging small-scale, community and local-authority renewable schemes.

Expand community energy schemes and encourage councils to develop community energy-saving projects and local electricity generation.

Promote city-scale demonstration projects in electric vehicles and clean energy.

At least 30% of household market to be supplied by competitors to the 'Big 6' by 2022.