MPs' Green press releases

Heath Bemused By Blair’s Fixation With Nuclear

Local MP David Heath has raised concerns about Tony Blair’s embrace of nuclear energy.

“Tony Blair is again making up policy as he goes along. He has already disregarded the view of one energy review and is now pre-empting a second. The Prime Minister pays lip service to renewables and energy efficiency but it seems clear where his preference lies. The issues of climate change and energy security are fundamentally important and after too much inaction it is essential that the right decisions are made.

“Nuclear power is being presented as our saviour from climate change which is simply not the case. Nuclear energy suffers from a number of faults which have not yet been solved. By focusing on nuclear power there is a diversion of assets and attention away from renewable sources such as wave and tidal which offer substantial gains and would benefit considerably from added investment. This is an area where the UK could, and should, lead the world.

“It is not enough for people to flout their supposed green credentials. Action is needed to engage with the monumental threat we face from climate change. We must be bold and back a radical alternative, not simply embrace an approach which supports the status quo and stores up serious problems for the future.”

Crispin Blunt welcomes call for law to change and calls for relaxation of regulations on water companies

Crispin Blunt, MP for Reigate, today welcomed the Ten-Minute Rule Motion placed before the House of Commons by former Environment Minister, John Gummer MP. In a speech to the House of Commons Mr Gummer put forward a series of proposals that would oblige developers to assess the impact of new housing on the water supply. The speech came on the day that much of the South-East learnt that it faced the worst drought in decades.

The impact of new housing on the water supply has been consistently over-looked despite contributing to the current water crisis. One of the reasons for this is that whereas rainwater falling in the south would previously have drained into the water table, as more and more of the region has been developed rainwater runs off roads and pavements into drains rather than into the underground water supply. For similar reasons flooding has been worse in times of wet weather as run-off has flowed straight into streams and rivers as development has reduced the number of fields and green spaces.

SUCCESS FOR WHITEHEAD & CLIMATE CHANGE BILL

Alan Whitehead, MP for Southampton Test, is celebrating today as the Climate Change & Sustainable Energy Bill achieves House of Commons acceptance.

The Bill which has had to continually ward off the juvenile tactics of two maverick Tory MPs was successful today in its final stages in the House of Commons and now passes to the House of Lords. This has been hailed as a notable achievement across all the parties and by many interest groups.

The Bill had been adjourned at Third Reading as the Rt Hon Eric Forth had continued to talk thus preventing the Bill from passing to the Lords. Dr Whitehead’s own Private Members Bill (PMB) ‘Management of Energy in Buildings’ was derailed earlier in this parliamentary session by similar tactics – during the Second Reading of Dr Whitehead’s PMB Mr Forth talked his Bill out which effectively meant there was not sufficient parliamentary time to pursue it further.

However, at the Committee stage of the Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Bill, Dr Whitehead successfully achieved the incorporation of all the key clauses from his own PMB including;

– the better compliance of building regulations in energy efficiency
– the removal of planning permission for micro-generation in homes
– and new regulations to ensure a minimum energy standard in new homes including micro-generation

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