Liberal Democrats put the environment at the heart of their manifesto
A Liberal Democrat government would mean less pollution, less waste, a higher priority for public transport and more help for cyclists and pedestrians, says East Dunbartonshire Liberal Democrat parliamentary spokesperson Jo Swinson.
Welcoming the publication of the Liberal Democrat Manifesto for the Environment, Jo Swinson said, “Liberal Democrats believe that there should be a green backbone running right through Government. We need to start with firm action to tackle climate change, cut traffic congestion and give proper support to alternative fuel sources.
“Since Labour same to power in 1997, total municipal waste has gone up by nearly a fifth, we are still bottom of the European recycling league, and our streets are littered with more abandoned cars then ever before. The number of conservation sites in a good condition has
“Liberal Democrats would get tough on polluters, with a new specialist Environmental Court to deal with enforcing environmental rules. We will ensure the level of penalties which polluters have to pay are appropriate to the offence – at present they are often trivial compared to the profits from environmental crime.
“We will tackle unnecessary waste, with a long-term goal of zero municipal waste, through waste minimisation, reuse and recycling. As a first step, we will ensure that within seven years 60% of all household waste is recycled, and we will aim to offer every household
regular kerbside recycling collections. Manufacturers will be held responsible for disposing of their products and materials that are difficult to reuse or recycle. We will not allow new municipal waste incinerators unless they can be shown to be the best environmental option.
“We will build the environment into the planning system and bring in a range of measures to make homes more energy efficient, bringing heating bills down as well as reducing pollution and cutting greenhouse gas emissions.
“Thousands of people die each year from preventable cold-related illnesses – mostly pensioners. Poor home insulation and poor quality housing are among the main causes. We will allow the Pensioners’ Winter Fuel Payment to be taken in the form of energy saving
materials. A pensioner could save more than £100 by investing just one year’s Winter Fuel Payment, and help the environment as well.”
“We will encourage walking and cycling. Children walking to school get fit for life – but it must be safe. Fewer school-run car journeys also mean less pollution, less congestion and fewer road deaths. Liberal Democrats will promote Safe Routes to School with calmed traffic, safe
pavements, good lighting and grown-ups on hand to conduct ‘walking buses’. We will provide more cycle routes and reform planning rules to make sure key services are more easily accessible by foot or bicycle.
“These proposals would protect and improve the environment – helping our pockets, our families, our communities and our world. A greener Britain means a better environment, and a better life for all.”