In dear David Cameron’s so called “reshuffle” of his cabinet, (in preparation for next year’s general election), he appears to have done what we previously thought impossible: made his party even more of a sick joke. Why am I being so harsh? Well, his new environment and energy ministers both oppose green energy.
Matthew Hancock, the new energy minister, has publicly opposed a wind farm in his constituency and asked Cameron to cut green subsidies to offshore wind farms. Hardly progressive, but pretty much what I’d expect from a Tory energy minister.
But the new environment secretary is something else. I cannot get over this woman. She’s called Liz Truss. She’s also opposed wind and solar farms, and she’s also against green taxes – says they’re ruining the economy. Even though the London School of Economics doesn’t think they’re a problem. She backs nuclear power, which she thinks is a green option. She also enthusiastically backs fracking, which she says is good for local communities. And she used to work as a management accountant for Shell. I know. Shell. Talk about vested interests.
If that’s not bad enough for you, she also supports the controversial and unscientific badger cull, and she is even pro-hunting. Yep. The new environment minister is pro legal wildlife extermination for sport.
During her stint as education and childcare minister, she was fully behind Gove’s free school and academy shambles and against the ”child-centered” education philosophy, which she reckons has been holding kids back for decades. She’s also part of a group of politicians working towards less regulation and a freer market. A plan in direct opposition with environmental protection, which requires regulation for obvious reasons. Are we going to wait around for companies to turn green of their own accord? Because I mean, good luck with that. I hope you bought snacks, and an inflatable raft, because you’re in for a long wait.
Literally the only good thing I can say about Liz Truss is that apparently she’s the youngest female cabinet member ever, in the UK. Cameron appears to have finally realised his government is almost entirely crusty old rich white men, and that most of the electorate do not fit that description. In a bid for the “woman’s vote” next year, he’s added quite a few female politicians to the cabinet. Which is good, as long as they’re not ”token females” but serious contenders. But, Mr Cameron, as a female voter, I have to tell you that while I would like the historic and persistent gender imbalance in parliament to be rectified, I am decidedly more concerned with a politician’s policies than their chromosomes. You cannot expect my inner feminist to accept some right wing anti-environment ex-Shell employee as our ENVIRONMENT MINISTER just because she’s a woman and she’s 38.
It just isn’t good enough.
Well anyway, this seemingly vile lady has been appointed to look after the UK’s environment. With her and that Hancock fool in the two jobs most responsible for mitigating climate change in this country, we really don’t stand a hope in hell of getting anywhere near any of our environmental targets. Cutting carbon by 80% by 2050 and making sure at least 15% of our energy comes from renewables by 2020 are two goals we currently are legally obliged to complete. They’re not even as ambitious as they should be, but I don’t see them getting ticked off under Truss’s watch.
But don’t worry too much – there’s a general election next year, and if the Tories don’t get chucked out I’ll be very surprised. And horrified. But mostly just in shock. Seriously, they’ve done so much to ruin this country since they came to power, and people are rightfully very angry.
So let this story be yet another piece of ammunition for the already bloated fuck-the-Conservatives argument.