Environment Bill – Friends of the Earth reaction
Absence of guarantee to maintain existing environmental safeguards slammed.
Commenting on the Environment Bill published today, Dave Timms, Head of Political Affairs at Friends of the Earth said:
“Despite some improvements from previous proposals, it’s extremely disappointing that the Environment Bill won’t protect existing environmental safeguards from being watered down – something ministers have repeatedly promised.
“We’re facing a climate emergency – and while the new environmental watchdog will at least have power to hold government to account on climate change, its independence is still not guaranteed. And it’s speed of progress hardly suggests the blue lights are being switched on.
“It’s encouraging to see headline commitments on issues such as plastics, air pollution and natural restoration, but it remains to be seen if the frameworks set out in this ‘flagship’ bill will have the clout to fulfil the government’s ‘world leading’ ambitions.
“The climate crisis is the biggest threat we face – the government’s commitment to tackling it will be judged on its action, not words.”