How builders plan to get round the Ulez charge

‘What a worry the Ulez must be for you both,’ said a friend with a nod to the pick-up truck parked outside our house. It was kind of him to wonder. The builder boyfriend drives an old Mitsubishi L200 to work in London every day and like almost every other working man he cannot afford to buy a new vehicle that is Ulez compliant so you would presume he has to pay the charge. But that’s not quite how it’s turning out. There is no Ulez problem for any Khan supporter who can find an old granny to put in his old car once a week If I might speak

Who’s cashing in on the climate emergency?

‘The climate transition presents a historic investment opportunity,’ says BlackRock CEO Larry Fink. ‘What the financiers, the big banks, the asset managers, private investors, venture capital are all discovering is: There’s a lot of money to be made in the creation of these new [green] jobs,’ chimes in presidential climate envoy John Kerry.  Fink concedes that the economy remains ‘highly dependent’ on fossil fuels. He also asserts that BlackRock is ‘carbon neutral today in our own operations’. It’s a claim open to challenge. ‘If a company or individual says to me they are net-zero, I know it is complete crap,’ tweeted Glen Peters, research director of the Oslo-based Centre for International Climate

The ECJ’s air pollution ruling against Britain is hard to swallow

The European Court of Justice (ECJ) has ruled that the UK ‘systematically and persistently’ breached EU limits for nitrogen dioxide (NOx) emissions in 16 areas including London, Manchester and Glasgow between 2010 and 2017. It’s a judgement that means, despite Brexit, that a multi-million euro fine may be on its way. The UK is leaving the ECJ behind us; but as part of the withdrawal deal, we have agreed to respect its rulings on cases already in progress – and this one started in 2018. I’d be wholly in favour of the UK being fined gazillions for our historically appalling emissions – with one important caveat, which I’ll come to. After

The fatal flaw in Boris’s ten point carbon plan

There is nothing wrong with the general direction of policy contained within the government’s ten point plan to cut carbon emissions, announced today. Who doesn’t want clean energy and more energy-efficient homes and vehicles? The problem is the perverse target which lies at its heart: the legally-binding demand, laid down in the Climate Change Act, to cut carbon emissions to net zero by 2050. This is so badly defined that the government’s ten point plan becomes really little more than a manifesto to export much of British industry, food production and power generation. The UK’s definition of carbon emissions, as used in the Climate Change Act, covers only ‘territorial’ emissions