Green tests for the Environment Bill

Boris Johnson has written an article in The Times describing the Environment Bill which will be in the Queen’s Speech on Monday. As a quick measure of how green this Environment Bill really is, here are five policies that it must include:

* new target of zero carbon by 2030

* clean air as a human right

* stopping all unnecessary single use plastic by 2025

* all new housing being zero carbon 

* 30,000 hectares of new forest a year (this is the target set by the Committee on Climate Change).

The Prime Minister will claim that his ‘landmark legislation will set a framework of far-reaching, legally binding targets to reduce plastics, restore biodiversity, improve the quality of our water and clean up our air.’ Fine words. But such legally binding targets are already set out in European legislation, although that hasn’t stopped the government losing three court cases about its failure to hit existing air pollution targets over the last eight years. We need some real action, please.