Deposit charge on plastic bottles will work

I was in the House of Lords’ Chamber this afternoon to ask the Government Minister about recycling and waste disposal. It was reassuring that Peers from across the parties were calling on the Government to simplify recycling schemes across the country. Recycling rates vary massively between local authority areas, and in recent years recycling has been falling in England. It’s essential that we take what is working from the highest performing areas and bring all local authorities up to this standard. Recycling should be easy and accessible for everyone. Continue reading “Deposit charge on plastic bottles will work”

Lords debate Brexit

As someone who has advocated leaving the EU for over two decades, I resent people saying I am out to ‘wreck’ the Brexit bill by seeking to amend it. Many of us have huge concerns that we will lose environmental and social protections because of the way the Prime Minister is approaching these negotiations. I am concerned that the Cabinet will attempt to dump protections for everything from wildlife and countryside to workers rights and climate change, by using a combination of exit negotiations and secondary legislation. It is wrong to use the referendum result as cover for by-passing proper Parliamentary scrutiny and the Lords has the job of ensuring that a democratic process is followed throughout the different stages of the negotiations. As for the threats of Lords abolition and replacing it with a democratically elected second chamber, that would be a welcome bonus.

Iran’s ecology under threat from oil rush

This is a crucial time for the local people and environment of South West Iran, as the area faces an oil rush prompted by the lifting of sanctions. I agreed to host a meeting in the Lords (alongside Peter Tatchell) to launch a new report on the Ahwaz region because it makes clear that Iran’s ecology matters most to its minority communities whose lives and livelihood are at risk. Continue reading “Iran’s ecology under threat from oil rush”

Tougher regulation of ivory trade not as good as a ban

Along with the great, the good and the not so good, I signed a letter to the Prime Minister asking for a ban on the Ivory trade. The Government has responded to the campaign by Action for Elephants and others, by toughening up the regulations governing the trade. However, as an addendum to the letter explains, this falls short of what really needs to be done in order to help safeguard the lives of elephants and rhinos from the people who hunt them.

elephants-ivory

Jenny hosts CPRE report launch event

On Tuesday evening Jenny hosted an event for the Campaign to Protect Rural England in the House of Lords ‘River Room’.

CPRE were launching their report entitled ‘Safe under us?’ – the report is an investigation into widespread threats from house-building in the London Metropolitan Green Belt and highlights how government policies and sanctions appear to be forcing councils to release Green Belt land for development. Continue reading “Jenny hosts CPRE report launch event”