Tuesday, March 18, 2008

greenwash 101

After reading this post from the Lazy Environmentalist I emailed my MP, Alison Seabeck, to petition for her support on the Early Day Motion mentioned. Her reply:

"Thank you for your email. I regret that as a Government
Minister(Whip) I cannot sign EDMs which are used by back bench MPs to
raise issues. Alan Simpson is a powerful advocate for alternative and
renewable energy on Labour's back benches.

I have recently sat on the Energy Bill Committee which discussed a range
of issues including measures which will enable more microgeneration. It
is important though that we encourage the right type of micro generation
in the right places. Too many people have put up wind energy technology
in places where they get very little return.

During the course of the Energy Bill the Minister did announce that
there would be a strategic overview of renewables this summer and that
the issue of feed in tariffs would be included in that discussion. This
is important. They are by no means ruled out and clearly Alan Simpson
is ensuring they remain on the Government's agenda.

Alison Seabeck MP

Interesting for several reasons: Firstly, her reference to Alan Simpson as "
a powerful advocate for alternative and renewable energy on Labour's back benches" is of note because she specifically identifies him to be an advocate. This contrasts sharply with many members of the Parliamentary Labour Party such as Alison herself and particularly the Cabinet, who- if you are to ignore their propaganda and infer their policy objectives directly from their actions- are opposed to any research and development of renewable generation beyond that necessary to appear to be doing so.

Secondly, Alison's role on the Energy Bill Committee is laudable. However the measures she mentions, “
measures which will enable more microgeneration” and “ we encourage the right type of micro generation in the right places”, are problems that have resulted from Labour's own policies on renewables. Their lack of direction on grants for renewable installations has been well documented elsewhere and I will not go into it here. Also, the reason people install inappropriate renewable capacity is because the government haven't shown any inclination to publicise useful information relating to the suitability of the different technologies. Or any information relating to renewables, really.

Thirdly, the Energy Bill itself has been determined to be illegal by Greenpeace.

Fourthly, the issue of Feed In Tariffs should not be a matter for discussion, it should be a matter for immediate action. There are even websites available that explain, carefully and clearly so that even MPs can understand, how to implement FITs.

Time and again I am appalled by the laissez-faire attitude of MPs towards imminent climate change. Ignorance of the facts can't seriously be an excuse for these people and so what is it? Some mass psychosis towards future generations? Outright denial? Any way you spin this these people are perpetuating the status quo that will result in gigadeaths and the end of civilisation as we know it on this planet. They should be removed from power.

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