Liberal Dems promise £3bn for green economy

Riding the wave of popularity following the party leaders' debate on Thursday, the Lib Dem's Nick Clegg has been under the media spotlight this week - he could have used the extra attention to highlight any area of his party's policy, but he chose to bring its green agenda to the attention of the wider public.

As reported by edie last week, the Lib Dems have big plans to rebuild the battered national economy in a darker shade of green.

This would include redistributing £3.1bn of public spending currently ‘wasted’ to fund offshore wind energy, energy efficiency in buildings and a scheme to bring quarter of a million empty homes back into use.

“We have detailed plans to make our economy environmentally, financially and socially sustainable,” said Mr Clegg.

“Today, Monday, I will set out further details of our costed plan for an immediate green job creation package, taking over £3bn of savings to invest in housing transport and green energy.

“This will provide an immediate jobs boost and help create the green infrastructure we need for a low carbon economy.”

The plan includes the widely-reported intention of converting ailing shipyards to manufacture wind turbines and to offer cash back to home owners investing in measures to improve the energy efficiency of their properties.

Schools will also be offered interest-free loans to improve their energy performance in a move portrayed as protecting budgets meant for learning from being spent on meeting the obligations of the Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC).

Those owning empty property will also be offered favourable finance to carry out any work needed to bring them back into use.

Mr Clegg also announced a scrappage scheme for bus companies, in an effort to get older, polluting vehicles off the road and replaced by more modern, cleaner public transport.

Sam Bond

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