The Labour Party has set out its environment and climate change policies should it win the General Election, and it includes a commitment to review resource efficiency.
The Green Plan pledges a number of targets:
- giving the Green Investment Bank borrowing powers
- setting a legally binding target to decarbonise electricity supply by 2030
- creating a million new green jobs by 2025
- introducing ‘green bonds’ that will enable individuals and communities to invest in clean energy and other low-carbon technologies
- delivering a Stern-style review into resource security
- upgrading five million homes over 10 years to boost energy efficiency
The party says there is a need to prioritise the recycling of waste in the UK instead of exporting it.
Labour claims its approach will increase business confidence in the long-term demand for recycled material.
The Green Plan also pledges to protect the public forest estate from privatisation, plant new woodlands near populated areas, protect homes from extreme weather conditions and lower air pollution.
Caroline Flint, Labour’s shadow climate change secretary, left, said: “The next Labour Government will commit Britain to decarbonising our electricity supply by 2030 to give business certainty to invest, so we can create a million green jobs over the next decade and invest in green technology and green infrastructure to power Britain’s economy forward into the future.”
The strategy comes after the party’s election manifesto drew criticism from the sector for failing to mention waste management, recycling or resource efficiency.
Meanwhile, the Scottish National Party’s 2015 manifesto promises the party will use any influence in Westminster to ensure the UK matches Scotland’s carbon reduction targets. It would also encourage the creation of a UK Climate Justice Fund, similar to the Scottish Government’s.
The SNP says it will “continue to develop” its zero waste strategy, including support for the ongoing pilot of reverse vending machines, which rewards recycling with vouchers.