Caroline Lucas admits flying long haul as Green Party pledge £100BILLION on climate change


CAROLINE LUCAS admitted she takes long haul flights to the US to visit her son just days after the Green Party launched its general election campaign with a pledge to spend £100 billion on tackling climate change.

Ms Lucas insisted focusing on “individual behaviour” lets big companies “off the hook”. She added people should not be “sitting in judgement on each other”. Ms Lucas said on the BBC’S Andrew Marr show this morning: “My son lives in the United States and so I do fly, not often, but occasionally I do.

“We all try to make the changes that we can but do you know what, I think sometimes a focus on individual behaviour, important though that is, lets the big fossil fuel companies off the hook, it lets those in power off the hook.

“What we need here is systems change.

“It is incredibly easy to pit one person’s behaviour against another person’s behaviour and say ‘you are not good enough’. 

“We are all trying to do our best in a deeply imperfect system and so what we need to be doing I think is focusing on changing that system.”

Ms Lucas added one of the ways to change the system could be to make flying more expensive.

She said: “Why, for example, is it so much more expensive to take the train from the UK to other parts of Europe than it is to fly?

“There is no reason for that it is because we have chosen not to tax aviation fuel and VAT on aviation and instead we do when it comes to railways. 

“Let’s change those price signals to make it easier for people to do the right thing rather than sitting in judgement on each other saying that we are not doing enough.”

In the December 12 election, Ms Lucas will stand for the Brighton Pavillion seat she has held since 2010.

After the 2017 general election, she was the Green Party’s only MP.

Last week, the party launched their “Green New Deal” as their main pledge to voters.

This includes making the UK carbon neutral by 2030.

However, the Labour Party has committed to a similar pledge and the Tories have committed to achieving this by 2050.

Hitting this goal by 2030 would see the Greens spend £100 billion a year on cleaner transport and “retrofitting” homes with better insulation.

Up to £91 billion would be borrowed.

And the remaining £9 billion would come from raising corporation tax by five percent from the current level of 19 percent to 24 percent.

Ms Lucas also said this morning her party had a “real chance of winning” in places like the Isle of Wight, Bristol West, Stroud, and Bury St Edmunds thanks to the electoral pact she has reached with the Lib Dems and Plaid Cymru.

On her party’s plans to spend more than £100 billion “greening” the economy, she said: “£100 billion a year over 10 years is what we think is necessary to try to reach net zero by 2030.

“We think the Government’s target of saying we’re going to get to net zero emissions by 2050 – another 30 years away – is just simply not up to scrutiny.

“And it’s like dialling 999 and saying can I have a fire engine, please in 30 years’ time? It’s not commensurate with what I understand to be an emergency.”


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