I’ve always had trouble knowing who to vote for, but with the possibility of a general election quite soon here in the UK, it’s worth taking a good look at where the various political parties stand on the issues we care about here on make wealth history. are a helpful group in comparing environmental issues, although I will have to look elsewhere to find the social justice and development policies.
The Green Alliance is a group that takes in several major agencies, including Greenpeace, Friends of the Earth, RSPB and the National Trust. Their report, , compares the three main political parties on six tests of environmental leadership – UK leadership on climate change, international leadership on climate change, green living, the natural environment, planning, and environmental taxes and subsidies – and awards the party a green, amber or red light on each.
So how do they compare?
Well, the Conservative party get full marks for raising the debate and getting climate change front and centre. Unfortunately the report concludes that none of their policies are well thought out enough to actually deliver, and they score no green lights. They have shown no vision at the international level, and offer no real few incentives for greener living.
Labour get one green light, for international leadership. The UK is one of the major voices in the international debate. They score amber on the rest, apart from planning. Here Labour’s policies risk making planning less democratic, transparent, and accountable.
The Liberal Democrats meanwhile score green lights for UK leadership, and are the only party taking green living seriously, or suggesting environmental tax mechanisms. They fail on natural environment, which they’ve forgotten (like all the parties actually) in the rush to address climate change.
In short, the Lib Dems are the best of a bad bunch. Must do better. The Alliance will continue to monitor the parties, and we’ll revisit the issue when an election is finally called.
Of course, you could always vote Green. Their ‘, and you can see for yourself how they shape up, but they still lack a face, a leader people can rally around, and so they perhaps lack the credibility they are striving for. Then again, with the mainstream parties campaigning on issues that the Greens have sought to get on the agenda, perhaps their work is done. I don’t know, and I still don’t know who to vote for. Persuade me, while there’s still time…