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Blair and Howard can't be trusted with stewardship of Britain's environment - Baker

September 12, 2004 12:00 AM

Michael Howard - Conservative (Tory) leaderOn Monday 13th September the leader of the Conservatives, Michael Howard, will make a speech to the Environment Forum. This will be followed by a speech on climate change by the Prime Minister, Tony Blair, on Tuesday 14th September.

Ahead of these speeches, Norman Baker MP, the Liberal Democrat Environment Shadow Secretary, today releases his analysis of both the Labour and Tory records on the environment from their times in Government.

Norman Baker MP said:

"Michael Howard's record on the environment shows he truly is the Toxic Tory. In his time as Environment Secretary he gave an amnesty to water companies polluting rivers and attempted to repeal European environmental legislation.

"Tony Blair should be known as '10-minute Tony' after his last so-called key note speech on the environment. His Government's record on the environment is woeful, since Labour came to power carbon emissions from aircraft are up 23%. Labour have shown little interest green issues introducing only one debate on the subject in Parliament since the last general election.

"The public will not be fooled by a token tick-box annual speech by Blair or Howard when their record on the environment is so poor. Global warming, pollution and threats to wildlife are problems that are worsening daily and cannot be tackled with empty rhetoric. A yearly speech on such a crucial issue is simply not good enough.

"Only the Liberal Democrat have a serious year round approach to the environment. We have consistently uncovered the Government's environmental failures and we are the only party putting forward genuine green alternatives.

"By proposing radical initiatives, such as a restructuring of Road Tax with the most polluting cars paying significantly more and cars with smaller engines paying less, we are putting forward market based solutions to the environmental crises."