John Knight's May 2022 Talking Politics column for Macclesfield Express

21 May 2022

Following local elections earlier this month in Wales and much of England, the Green Party now has 547 councillors on 167 local authorities. The Greens won a total of 124 seats including a net gain of 78, with the highest percentage increase in councillors of any party in England. Scottish Greens also made big gains. We in Macclesfield and Cheshire East will get our opportunity to follow suit in elections next May, as more and more communities see that voting Green gets you hard-working, honest representatives. 

Ahead of last week’s Queen’s Speech. the Greens were calling for the Government to provide £25bn to insulate homes and install renewable energy, helping to keep people's homes comfortable and reduce bills, addressing the fact that the UK has some of the draughtiest housing stock in Europe. 

We wanted to see new legislation that would have raised revenue for funding insulation measures by taxing the enormous profits made by oil and gas companies during the crisis. 

Instead, we got a lot of Bills and a lot of hot air. Nothing to create the fairer, greener communities that so many are crying out for, and so many people voted for when they elected Green councillors in such record numbers. 

The government has again demonstrated its failure to get to grips with the cost-of-living crisis and the climate emergency. Instead, it appears to be putting its energy into creating a bonfire of the environmental standards and protections that we enjoyed as part of the EU, rather than tackling the root causes of growing climate instability. It refuses to impose a dirty profits tax on the fossil fuel giants or introduce the hugely popular idea of a carbon tax that could help fund the transition to a cleaner, greener economy with greater energy security and lower bills.

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