With the polling stations now open (until 10pm tonight) we thought we would very briefly look at all the major parties and their Environmental / Energy policies. So if you are worried about your pet rabbit’s living conditions (see below) or you want to see DECC scrapped completely read on to find out who you should be voting for this year!
Conservatives Environmental Manifesto
- Stop dead On-Shore wind farms – by giving the public the final say on any applications and halting further public subsidies.
- Keep pushing for a strong global climate deal – helping the world adapt to climate impacts
- Cut emissions – with cost effective being an important focus. “Additional distorting and expensive power sector targets”
- Start up funding for renewable technologies – but only when deemed promising
- Shale gas safe development – no major focus but allowing the technology to prosper
- North sea oil and gas development – while supporting the increase of renewables
- Insulating a million homes over a 5 year period
- Smart meters by 2020 – to increase the efficiency of the electricity grid
- Plant 11 million trees, pocket parks, clean up rivers and lakes, tackle air pollution
- A Blue Belt for marine habitats around 14 overseas territories
- £500m set aside over 5 years for zero emission vehicles by 2050
- £200m to make cycling safer and more popular – reducing the strain on public transport and cutting vehicle emissions
The Conservatives are keen to press for new renewable technologies and increases in current applications. An enthusiastic manifesto pledges ‘start-up funding for promising new renewable technologies and research’ the important thing is that they seem to be rather picky and differ from the Green Party by only give that funding ‘to those that clearly represent value for money’. There is also a lot of blame from the Conservatives towards Labour who watched gas bills increase by 100%, electricity by 100% and fuel poverty soar. The ‘failure to deliver the next generation of energy projects that will help us keep the lights on, drive bills down and reduce carbon emissions’. This has resulted in a far more ‘green’ approach by the Labour party.
VOTE CONSERVATIVE IF: You hate those ‘nasty’ on-shore wind farms and think the Lib Dems are just a tad too focused on the environment
Labour Environmental Manifesto
- 5 million homes to be retrofitted over the next 10 years – using subsidies
- 200,000 homes insulated a year free for those on low incomes – using insulation methods such as loft and cavity wall insulation
- Create 1m new green jobs as a result of their policies
- 1m interest free loans for better off homeowners – to take out further energy efficiency improvements at no upfront cost
- To produce a zero-emission electricity supply by 2030
- A priority in Carbon storage and capture
- Give the green bank borrowing powers
- Plant new woodland and trees closer to homes
- Protect homes and businesses from extreme weather
- Strong regimes and environmental procedures for shale gas.
- Labour want to freeze energy prices until 2017
The Labour party are keen to increase low carbon technologies, pushing Britain to the top of low carbon technologies, a ‘world leader in low carbon technologies over the next decade, creating a million additional green jobs’. Further to this is the realisation of ‘the energy mix we need, including renewables, nuclear, green gas, carbon capture and storage, and clean coal’. Not just a blind, unrealistic approach to solely renewables. The basic principle is that of low carbon technologies and greater resource efficiency.
VOTE LABOUR IF: You’re scared of those nasty energy price hikes and want to know want you’ll be paying beyond next week.
Liberal Democrats Environmental Manifesto
- Increase the amount of green space found around urban areas
- Extra tree per child born by the time we reach 2020
- Marine protection – ensuring wildlife safe from damage and pollution
- Increase water metering uptake – ensuring the UK’s water supply
- Tidal power, carbon capture & storage, energy storage & low vehicle emission.
- Green investment bank full borrowing powers
- 50% of tax revenues from shale gas to go back into ‘green means’ – funding energy efficiency, community energy, low carbon innovation and renewable heat
- End the generation of electricity from coal by 2025
- Any new gas stations but after 2030 have to have carbon capture and storage technologies
- Every domestic home to have an energy performance certificate rating of C by 2035 – through insulation and improved heating systems.
- Feed Out Tariff for those who install solid wall insulation – improving the payback of this popular insulation technique
- Rewarding homeowners for making energy efficiency improvements – £100 off council tax every year for 10 years
True to say that on first glance they have put more impetuous on the ‘green’ side of things than the Conservatives & Labour. A very interesting think to note is the Feed-Out-Tariff for those who install Solid Wall Insulation – something that TheGreenAge have always pushed. Rewards for home improvements seem to be top of their list for domestic properties. Along with the increase in Carbon capture and storage, they have pledged to increase the focus on tidal energy, which is something that hasn’t been exploited to it’s full potential thus far.
VOTE LIB DEM IF: You want to be rewarded for making those energy efficient home improvements and like the colour orange.
Green Party Environmental Manifesto
- Zero carbon economy by 2050
- £80bn invested more than the next party towards renewable generation methods.
- Borrowing powers the green investment bank
- All new homes built required to be passivhaus – a radical improvement on current building regulations
- Nationwide access to free insulation – not necessarily limited to cavity and loft insulation
- £4.5bn invested on research for less energy intensive industrial processes
- 42GW offshore wind generation by 2020, up to 60GW by 2030
- 25GW of solar pv generation by 2020
- Fracking and shale gas getting a complete ban
- Nuclear power to be phased out over the next 10 years
- Carbon capture and storage to be supported only as a transitional technology for gas power plants
- Invest in electricity recharging points for electric cars up and down the country
An extremely ambitious shift to a purely renewable energy sector, with huge amounts dedicate to off-shore wind and solar PV. Equally ambitious plans to increase building regulations to Passivhaus also stand out in otherwise similar manifestos across the parties. Unlike other parties, the Green party believe in the limitations of Carbon capture and storage, using it only as a transitional technology for gas power plants.
VOTE GREEN PARTY IF: You think rabbits shouldn’t live in cages and you hate the idea of foie gras
UKIP Environmental Manifesto
- Scrap the Department of energy and climate change
- Ditch UK’s decarbonisation agenda
- Repeal the Climate Change Act
- Diverse energy market based on all things – electricity generation from the most financially suitable methods
- Only support renewables if they are cost effective
- Withdraw renewable subsides – but honour whatever is currently in place
UKIP aren’t completely against the investment of renewable electricity generation, however will only pursue it where it can ‘deliver electricity at competitive prices’. As it stands, the only form of electricity in the UK capable of that is Hydo-electro. They also promise a revitalisation of the fossil fuel industry, providing affordable electricity once more. Environmentalist of all parties are aware of their plans to scrap DECC, WRAP and the Climate Change Act. Departments and organisations that have fought for so long to improve the state of the globe on an environmental scale, see themselves thrown to the sword.
VOTE UKIP IF: You don’t believe in climate change and want to spend money on more important things within the UK
Think we missed something? Do you have a different opinion?
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