Clegg and Farron champion green issues after Cameron appears to backtrack

Of course he hasn’t said this publicly, but the Telegraph reports that David Cameron has stated privately that he wants to “get rid of all the green crap” from Coalition policies.

Nick Clegg and Tim Farron are both quoted as robustly defending green measures and the jobs they create. Nick says that he doesn’t think the headlines portray David Cameron’s views.

On Call Clegg, Nick said:

Well, if I may use the word, it isn’t all crap, of course. It is worth remembering that a lot of the policies that we’ve got support tens of thousands of people who work in a booming green energy sector actually keep bills down in the long run because if you don’t insulate people’s homes today, they’re going to be spending more on their gas and electricity bills in the future and heating their homes. And crucially, some of these policies are there to help the most vulnerable. I’ll give you an example. One of these levies called the Warm Homes Discount will pay for sending out a check worth £135 to two million of the poorest households in this country. Now, by the way, the Prime Minister and I, funnily enough, were discussing this just yesterday. So it so happens, I don’t think that’s a fair reflection of his views. We both want to see policies where we are in control of them in government made as cost effective as possible without cutting our commitment to reducing carbon emissions and looking after the environment. So of course we’re going to try and reduce the cost of them and we’re looking at different options of doing that but we’re not going to abandon the long term objective of making sure that we reinvest all of our energy infrastructure to keep the lights on, make sure that we continue to support a green energy sector which is employing thousands upon thousands of people in this country and keep it…

And the solution is for the Government to pay for the investment in green technology rather than the consumer:

If you really want to snatch up that £135 cheque away from a million poor pensioners in this country, be my guest and try and make that sound popular or indeed, another million households. But what we can do, and of course we’re looking at this, is we can simply say, “Okay, well pay for that, not from your bills but the government will pay for it.” So we’re looking at all these options to make sure that we reduce wherever we can the burden on people’s bills whilst keeping in place the objectives of these policies

Tim Farron had no intention of giving David Cameron the benefit of any doubt, telling the Sun:

The ‘green c**p’, as the Tories call it, are the funds that pay for insulating the homes of elderly people and which support thousands of British manufacturing jobs.

This is depressingly cynical – only bothering about political spin, not in protecting our children’s future.

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  • Stephen Hesketh 21st Nov '13 - 9:35pm

    Long term forecasts are for energy prices being set to rise for the foreseeable future. One has to wonder by how much we could cut UK domestic energy consumption if the media (print in particular) spent a little more time on the positive things we could do as opposed to the continuing flood of negative stories. Setting aside the morals of the situation, using less energy must be the most cost effective things we can do in the longer term. Some of the possible results of global warming could make our failure to pay a few pounds on our bills to help fund green crap for the future are the stuff of nightmares. Once again the Tories reveal themselves to be occupying those darker recesses of the political scene where even enlightened self interest fails to have any influence. Well done Tim and Nick..

  • Tubby Isaacs 7th Dec '13 - 12:06am

    Well, this brave rearguard lasted all of 5 minutes.

    Anyone going to defend Clegg and Davey?

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