Sunday, June 22, 2008

Neither Stalin nor Mr Bean is good for green plans!!

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Apparently our government has big green energy plans (see here). This is great, provided they are in fact big, by which I mean sufficient to genuinely and promptly build energy security, cut oil dependence and tackle climate change. This is great, provided they are in fact green, by which I mean efficient, renewable, respectful of environmental limits, meeting needs by fair means, not passing problems to future generations. This is great if they are part of an overall strategy that is coherent and consistent, by which I mean that attention is paid to both what we should and should not be doing, such as building new coal-fired power stations, expanding airports, expanding nuclear power, building hundreds of miles of new roads, fuelling national and global consumerism.

At first sight the green energy headlines this weekend looked quite good. But there are many problems with the scale, pace, details, green credentials and perhaps most of all with the consistency of the plans within overall government policy. A key problem is that our PM, Gordon Brown sends out incompatible signals all the time: he wants his Saudi friends to raise oil production to try to lower prices but says he wants reduced oil consumption; he previously thought calling a general election was a good idea and then thought it wasn't; he introduced a ten pence tax band and praised it, then got rid of it, then said the consequences of getting rid of it were bad but only planned partial compensation; he was thought of as first Stalin and then Mr Bean (to borrow a phrase).


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Great new campaign/site for young people who are concerned about justice and want to get take action. Have a look around , which is about co-creation, empowerment, outrage, passion, connecting, doing something...about the state of our world. I was very interested, having been aware of this new campaigning initiative for a few days, that my daughter came home yesterday with ctrl alt shift information which she read cover to cover and talked keenly about. My partner today read the same material and did the same thing.