22 November 2017
Responding to the UK Budget, Gareth Redmond-King, Head of Energy and Climate at WWF said:
“This Budget shows confusion at the heart of the UK Government. Whilst support for electric vehicles and promising to tackle the scourge of single use plastics is very much to be welcomed, other measures point in the opposite direction. Most striking is the lack of any new money for renewables until 2025 whilst giving fossil fuels an easy ride by slashing taxes for North Sea Oil and Gas and freezing the fuel duty for diesel and petrol cars. This Budget misses the mark and does not secure the future of our planet that the Chancellor sets out to do.”
“It is a huge disappointment that there will be no new investment in UK renewables. Instead the Government has prioritised the dirty polluting fossil fuels from the North Sea, over and above investing in a new future. It is hard to see how we will achieve the ambition of the Clean Growth Strategy without more investment in renewables”.
On Electric Vehicles:
“The Chancellor is correct in saying we need to shift to electric vehicles ‘as soon as possible’. We want the UK Government to seize the initiative by committing to no new diesel or petrol cards by 2030 rather than 2040, in order to unlock investment and encourage this game changing shift. New money for charging points is welcome but we need to see details from the UK Government of how they will avoid ‘queues at the power pumps’.”
“The Chancellor has missed a trick by not recognising the importance of building high quality, environmentally friendly homes. We don’t just need new homes, we need new homes fit for the future, that are cheap to run, comfortable to live in and good for the planet”.
On plastics, Lyndsey Dodds, Head of UK Marine at WWF, said: “Plastic is suffocating our seas. Too often birds, fish, turtles and whales are found dead with plastics in their stomachs. This problem will only get worse unless urgent action is taken. The announcement in today’s Budget on tackling single-use plastic is a step forward but must be ambitious in its scope and scale if the UK is to achieve its goal of leaving the environment in a better state than it inherited it.”