In December 2007 Alistair Darling was quoted as saying:
“Sustainability will be at the heart of the next Budget.
This is not an optional extra. It is essential for all our futures”
So was it? – well hardly, pale green, maybe, at its best – but with the focus on plastic bags – just another greenwash exercise. (I have copied the Friends of the Earth budget comment on green homes below to illustrate)
The Governments Stern Report indicates we should be spending 13billion on environmental issues right now, to avoid higher costs in the future. Environmental commentators estimate our spend to currently be 1billion
This further illustrates the priority sustainability has within this government, which may be a good thing to be aware of, as it may, hopefully, generate more communalist approaches to sustainability, that is a grass roots, do it because its the right thing to do approach. We have seen this in the US – in spite of Bush’s negative stance – the GreenBuild industry has flourished – because it makes sense.
So, time to get on and do it, we cannot afford to wait to be led by government. As Ghandi said – “be the change you want to see in the world”
Not surprising then, as Mark Lynas commented in the Guardian earlier this week (Britain is stealing the US crown of No 1 climate villian)- we are seeing protests trying to enforce government policy against the wishes of the government. A truly shaming moment for the Brown government