Spring Statement: Chancellor fiddles while planet burns

28th March 2019

Climate change should be at heart of economic policy, not consigned to the margins.

Reacting to measures outlined in today’s Spring Statement to help combat climate change, Friends of the Earth’s head of political affairs, Dave Timms said:

“Instead of putting climate change at the heart of economic policy-making, the Chancellor is merely fiddling in the margins while the planet burns.

“The nation’s children are calling out for tough action to cut emissions, Mr Hammond must listen harder to the lesson they’re teaching him. “With the government enthusiastically backing more runways, more roads and fracking, it’s little wonder the UK is likely to miss future climate targets.

“The Chancellor should have announced a massive programme of investment in home insulation and public transport, instead of pushing the false solution of carbon off-setting for aviation.”

Commenting on the Chancellor’s pledge that gas boilers will be replaced by low-carbon heating systems in all new homes built after 2025, Dave Timms said:

“Banning fossil fuels from heating new homes from 2025 is an overdue but positive step forward.

“But we can’t continue to neglect our existing housing stock, many of which leak heat and cost a fortune in fuel bills.

“The Chancellor did nothing to reverse the massive cuts to home energy efficiency programmes which have seen insulation rates plummet to almost zero.”