Coalition’s green credentials damaged

September 23, 2010 at 12:45 pm Leave a comment

By Sophie Byrne

The Government has broken pre-election promises to halt illegally logged timber being imported into the United Kingdom. 350m-650m square meters of timber is illegally logged every year, in countries such as Brazil and Indonesia, which accounts for about 40% of the timber market. This illegal activity is a huge environmental problem which causes deforestation and desertification in developing countries.

The Coalition has also backed down on promises to reward individuals who installed small-scale solar panels before the launch of the government subsidy scheme. Chris Huhne, the climate and energy secretary, said that these trailblazers would have to content themselves with the ‘warm glow’ that their solar panels bring them.

Huhne reasoned that “In these difficult financial times, we need to focus on the principles of better regulation. There is little to be gained by initiating additional (and duplicative) UK legislation in this area and we must be wary of creating a disadvantage in our timber’s trade’s efforts to act as world leaders in the procurement of legal timber.” This highlights that in the face of looming cuts, the Coalition have turned their backs on the progressive environmental policies that incur short-term costs for critical long-term gains. From a Government that promised to be the greenest in history, this is very disappointing news.

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Entry filed under: Government Departments, Green Next Practice.

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