By Maximilian Clarke
London’s Mayor Boris Johnson has been rapped by Labour Assembly member Murad Qureshi, for allegedly scrapping several of his environmental commitments.
“This is not value for money for Londoners considering we’ve had to wait so long for these strategies to be released. I am most concerned that the Mayor is doing little to affect Londoners’ quality of life now. For example, his Energy strategy no longer calls upon the government to recognize the true scale of fuel poverty,” said Qureshi, adding:
“This is astonishing in today’s economic climate, with rising energy costs and more and more families slipping into fuel poverty.”
Specific targets dropped, Qureshi observes, include:
• Water — Target for dealing with leakages no longer aspires to “Uk industry standard by 2035” but instead to “simply continue to tackle leakage”
• Climate Change Adaptation — The Mayor’s RE:NEW target to improve the energy efficiency of 1.2 million homes by 2015 has been dropped. His new target is to treat just 55,000 homes by 2012.
• Energy — The Mayor no longer aims to replace 100,000 conventional vehicles with electric vehicles, instead, he’s now just looking to put 100,000 electric vehicles on the road. His target for 25,000 electric vehicle charging points by 2015 has been slashed to just 1,300 publicly accessible charge points by 2013.
• Municipal Waste — Boris has ditched plans to ask the government to consider a national deposit system for cans and bottles and his waste reduction reuse/repair target has slipped from 40,000 tonnes in 2015 and 120,000 tonnes in 2031 to 20,000 and 30,000 respectively — a drop of up to 75% from his original target.
• Business waste - As part of its total investment fund of £58 million, the London Waste and Recycling Board allocated fund of £36 million has been slashed to £21 million to help develop waste infrastructure. Consequently, the target to “secure 1.2million tonnes of waste diversion from landfill per year” has been downgraded to just 500,00 tonnes, and plans to save 300,000 tonnes of CO2 emissions every year have been reduced to a saving of 3 million tonnes of CO2 over the lifetime of the projects.
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