The Green Blues
Last month, Kwasi Kwarteng, the former chancellor of the exchequer, announced plans to ease restrictions and reduce taxes for businesses that will operate in new investment zones all around the UK. According to the treasury website, these investment zones would have fuelled growth and created more housing across the UK. By reducing taxes and making planning frameworks more lenient, the plan was supposed to drive development and investment.
Why did this plan anger environmental organizations?
In the investment zones, some of the regulations governing environmental protection were to be suspended. For example, developers could overlook water quality protocols, species conservation and space for nature. With more than 100 new licenses for oil and gas drilling being approved, fracking would have also increased. Indeed, the issue of fracking has caused deep divisions both within and across political parties, arguably fueling the end to Truss’s tenure as Prime Minister.
This all came after animal rights groups expressed frustration with the former government’s refusal to consider animal welfare in post- Brexit trade deals. In addition, there were reports that the former government might have eliminated the Kept Animals Bill, which bans things like the use of primates as pets and live exports. With the firing of environment minister Zac Goldsmith, animal rights and environmental groups were worried the situation would deteriorate. The country is now watching and waiting to see how this conversation will develop under Rishi Sunak.