Author Archives: Green Alliance blog

Why governments should be helping us to live the green good life

microchip.jpgThis post is by Tamsin Murray Leach of UCL’s Institute for Innovation and Public Purpose (IIPP-UCL).

There’s a lot of misunderstanding about what we mean when we talk about innovation, or technology, for that matter. Popular (mis)conceptions interpret it both to mean gadgets and robots, while governments promote ‘innovation’ as an economic panacea, focusing on invention and entrepreneurship. Yet the broader sociopolitical context behind technological change is often overlooked. This is especially true when it comes to the major shifts in lifestyle that have taken place with each technological revolution.

Read more

The green watchdog is a sound investment for our future

1200px-Durdle_Door_Overview.jpgThis post is by Tom West, ClientEarth’s law and policy advisor.

A major lesson from ClientEarth’s air quality challenges is that we cannot always rely on the government’s promises to meet its legal obligations.

It wasn’t that long ago that the UK was known as the ‘dirty man of Europe’ for causing acid rain across the continent, dumping sewage straight into the sea and failing to control pollution from large power stations, cars and industry.

Read more

Five factors that will ensure workers and communities benefit from the low carbon transition

construction-worker-569126_1280.jpgThis post is by Catherine Cameron, Katerina Cerna and Lucy Stone of the consultancy Agulhas: Applied Knowledge. It highlights the results of research commissioned under a grant from CIFF.

Change can leave not just stranded assets and industries but stranded communities. Workers in the tar sands oil fields of Alberta, Canada were determined this fate would not befall them. Worried that the boom and bust of oil extraction would lead to layoffs, community disintegration and tough times,  they chose a different course. The worker-led Iron & Earth initiative is an indication of what could happen if fossil fuel workers get involved in changing their prospects.

Read more

Leaving the EU will surrender our sovereignty

union jack flag and big ben in the background, London, UK - general elections, London, UKThis post is by Andrew Adonis and is based on his book Saving Britain: how we must change to prosper in Europe, co-authored with Will Hutton.

Brexit is the antithesis of the Conservative Party’s pro-European tradition, exemplified by Churchill’s post-war commitment to a united Europe, Heath’s passion for taking Britain into the Common Market and, indeed, Mrs Thatcher’s early enthusiasm for the single market. Brexiters pretend that once outside the EU, the world becomes an economic Eden raining down free fruit. There are no hard decisions or trade-offs. Britain, long thwarted by its dalliance with the EU, can freely gorge. This is cynical dishonesty based on willful ignorance. It is time to get real. Read more

What is the future of environmental governance in Northern Ireland?

northern ireland.jpgThis post is by Ciara Brennan, Mary Dobbs, Viviane Gravey and Attracta Uí Bhroin, authors of  a recent report on what Brexit means for Northern Ireland environmental governance.

The influence of EU membership on environmental governance in Northern Ireland has been profound. Now Brexit raises the very real possibility of major environmental governance gaps right across the UK. A risk which is exacerbated in Northern Ireland where environmental decision making and the implementation of environmental law is notoriously problematic.

Read more

UK chemical regulation needs a plan B for ‘no deal’

drum-label-poly-twinlxThis post is by Lord Teverson, chair of the House of Lords EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee

Virtually every product we use in our day-to-day lives is made from chemicals, so it’s vital that they’re made in a way that protects both environmental and human health. At the moment that process is managed by the EU chemical regulation, REACH, which combines legislation with an EU database, an EU regulator and the EU single market to create a system that keeps us all safe.

Read more

The Brexit white paper and the environment: a positive shift in language but big risks are still there

EU UK Big ben.jpgThis blog was written by Stephen Hinchley, principal policy officer at the RSPB.

Environmentalists in the UK and the EU now have something to work with following the government’s proposals, published in a white paper yesterday, to include environmental co-operation in the UK’s future partnership agreement with the EU.

Read more

What should an agriculture policy designed for public benefit look like?

Yorkshire grazing meadowsThis post is by Jonathan Baker, senior land use policy adviser at the Country Land and Business Association (CLA).

In these fevered times, environmentalists and farmers find themselves in agreement about much. There is an established cross sector consensus on the importance of the UK developing trade policies that do not export environmental problems, the need for a substantial and long term budget to support rural areas, and – albeit grudgingly in some instances – the necessity of moving to an agricultural policy that focuses on providing public benefits in return for public money.

Read more

« Older Entries