S21 – SoI from the Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural AffairsWatch
Aye for the road tax, as I'm a benefitter of that in real life.
Seriously though, I will ask my questitons in tomorrow's MQ's,
First, who does your proof-reading in the govt? I don't know how garbled, half-meaningless sentences like "The environment continues to be a major issue for the government ensuring that it is protected and sustained for the future generations..." and "Although we will still continue to focus on nuclear in the short to medium term, namely the Hinckley Power Plant ensuring that in the mean time, until we can get our standard of resources and technology to a sufficient level to rely on renewable alone, that we will continue to look at nuclear, while remembering this will be our main focus for only the short and medium term" can possibly get through any reasonable quality filter.
Second, there's a LOT of repetition, probably trying to make it look like there's more actual content than there is. You could rewrite this in less than half the length, and it would be much better.
Third, there really isn't much of substance in your nuclear/renewable policy. All I can get from it is that you're continuing the Hinckley development (does it really need saying? Canon!) and you're maintaining grants in real life (what are they - it shouldn't be the job of the audience to find out this stuff? Also, to my knowledge, they're still substantially lower than a few years ago, especially regarding things like solar panel installations, so it's not really the 'major focus' on renewables that you claim it to be).
Fourth, the fracking policy seems like it was come up with in 30 seconds. The green belt doesn't correspond well to areas which ought to be protected, especially since the main downside of fracking isn't the visual pollution which is the main goal of green belt protection. Furthermore, the non-green belt sites are important for property development, so isolating fracking to those areas is something which seems like a terrible idea.
On the fracking point actually, this sentence needs completely rewriting, it's gobbledegook: "As long as the area is deemed to be an area that has been identified as likely to have shale gas energy reserves, then we will ensure that firms, as long as the health and livelihood of the people of the local area is maintained, and that there is no undue disruption to their lives, then to ensure our energy reserves receive a boost; then we will ensure that fracking gets the green light here."
I support the sell by date policy, but the second half of that is better achieved simply by voting aye to the Labour Party's Bill on the topic right now.
The road tax policy both does very little, and insofar as 100-120g/km cars are concerned, it's impossibly vague.
Flood defences is good, and reverses the terrible decision of the RL government a few years ago (I think the Labour Party had a motion to this effect, so it's nice to see it implemented). However, the insurance policy is both a bad one (this reads like you're making home insurance mandatory), and the government simply can't afford to reimburse all losses from flood damage to property, especially when we consider the opportunity cost of this reimbursement. If this is what the department thinks is a good way to spend money, the department is either incompetent or overfunded, likely the former.
Your rural community transport idea is unclear - are you suggesting public transport, or buying them cars? I really hope the former - and unnecessary. If someone lives in a backwater which is so isolated, it doesn't even have a bus service, that's both their choice, and quite easy to remedy. Buses in rural areas are already heavily subsidised and expensive to run without running more bus services to the middle of nowhere.
You look like an absolute fool when you, a member of the government, try to deflect the failings of your government's SOI by criticising an opposition member for not being fully aware of just how terrible said SOI is.
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No to any fracking.*
Some farmers struggle to make ends meet, we are leaving the EU (sadly) so CAP payments will need to be replaced, yet this is absent from the statement. Nothing about rural shops,banks or post offices, and no timescales for anything.
No to any fracking.*
- Political Ambassador
Requiring further legislation:
Supermarket food waste section
Road tax changes