Nick Clegg’s e-mail to party members: The myth: green versus growth

Nick Clegg has been promoting his new deal with the six biggest energy companies which will mean that every consumer will receive a statement every year telling them if they’d be better off on a different tariff and how to change things. It’s part of what seems to be a strategy to debunk the idea put about by George Osborne and the Tory right that you can’t be green and have a growing economy at the same time. It makes sense that if we use our resources carefully, costs come down and that benefits everybody, business, consumer and the environment. He explained his thinking i an e-mail to party members which is reproduced here in full.

There is a myth doing the rounds that environmentalism has hit a wall – that green politics is only for good times. Some argue we have to choose between protecting our environment and growing our economy. But this argument is utterly wrong.

It is simply not true that you have to give up on the green economy if you want to grow. This is the case I have been making loud and clear today, you can read more here.

Don’t believe the naysayers when they tell you environmentalism is off the agenda. Share this on Facebook and let people know.

We are undergoing a profound transformation within our economy. For the first time our economic and environmental mantras are the same – waste not, want not.  Whether it’s waste of energy, waste of money or waste of potential of future generations.

This creates a unique opportunity to put environmental thrift into the mainstream, an argument Liberal Democrats have been making for generations. As we make the case for learning to live within our economic means we must make the case for living within our environmental means too.

We have to stop treating the environment like an afterthought. Instead we will show that consumer interests, business interests and green interests are the same. That is why the environment will be at the heart of everything Liberal Democrats do in government,  why I will be making more speeches on further green issues in coming months and why we will fight to make this the greenest government ever.

Best Wishes,

Nick Clegg MP
Leader of the Liberal Democrats and Deputy Prime Minister

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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8 Comments

  • “… &LID=12128&SEID=3048&T=0&FRM=1 …” – did Nick really say that???

  • Ken Campbell 11th Apr '12 - 9:50pm

    @Sid Cumberland

    It’s more catchy than the 2010 election slogan, I’ll give him that.

  • Another vote loser, I’m afraid, Caron. The right sentiments but the wrong time (before the May elections) to promote a Green agenda when the country is furious about the cost of fuel.
    Scarcely had Nick announced his new deal with energy companies than those who make money out of switching users’ tariffs between the big power providers were jumping up and down about its limitations. Just to compound it, Nick very honestly but rather naively admitted he had never thought about switching companies himself, thus leaving the impression he doesn’t understand how or, maybe worse, simply has no need to consider doing so.

  • Richard Dean 12th Apr '12 - 12:19am

    These long words hurt my brain. And my brain is owned by a typical voter. And this typical voter believes that democracy is about getting what you want. Being green is nice, but first and foremost, I want what I want. So, I’d be happy if you present greenness as a tool to get what I want, but not if greenness is the main aim that serendipitiously happens to get me what I want . Yes.

  • John Richardson 12th Apr '12 - 10:07am

    Being green is nice, but first and foremost, I want what I want.

    Who doesn’t want clean air, clean waters, a post-carbon energy infrastructure capable of taking over from ever scarce fossil fuels, and a stable climate so that posterity doesn’t have to rebuild half of civilisation?

  • Richard Dean 12th Apr '12 - 1:10pm

    John Richardson,
    I do want clean air and clean waters, but I get those now, mostly, so they’re not an issue.

    All this stuff about “a post-carbon energy infrastructure capable of taking over from ever scarce fossil fuels” sounds a bit wishy-washy to me. The reality is that you have to burn things to get heat. Or you go nuclear, And everyone knows that wind energy is more expensive than fossil fuels, otherwise why would it need a subsidy?

    Ask East Anglia about a stable climate so that posterity doesn’t have to rebuild half of civilisation. This is all academic hogwash isnlt it? And anyway it’s hardly an immediate problem – things won’t get urgent for many years yet, and there are a lot of other things that are more urgent right now

    Thanks for listening, a welcome change from most politicians!
    Yours etc
    A typical voter

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