Last week, the government published its strategy for a greener transport system, the Transport Decarbonisation Plan, which has been welcomed for new policies on electric vehicles and a significant positive shift in tone around cycling, walking and public transport. While it also recognises the many benefits that come from making transport greener – healthier lifestyles, savings for consumers and hundreds of thousands of new jobs – what will this plan actually change?
Since Brexit, environmental policy is increasingly being implemented via statutory instruments (SIs), which have been used to transpose EU law into UK law. They cover almost every aspect of the environment, from chemicals to wildlife to fisheries.
This post is by Agathe de Canson and Jo Furtado, policy advisers at Green Alliance.
Last week, the French government scrapped plans to expand its largest airport, Roissy Charles de Gaulle, citing environmental concerns. A few days later, Leeds City Council voted to expand Leeds Bradford Airport.
Aviation emissions accounted for seven per cent of UK greenhouse gas emissions in 2018, but this figure will inevitably grow if demand increases, making it harder still to limit the emissions of a sector that has no straightforward way to decarbonise. Airport expansion, like road expansion, increases demand, so will make it much harder to reach our climate goals.
It has been a trade-heavy summer, with the government busy negotiating trade deals, the Department for International Trade reviewing the way it engages with stakeholders and rumours that former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott could get a top UK trade role.