Our manifesto is ambitious in many ways, not least how it deals with the environment. Too often, this has been a ghetto issue for political parties: getting a token section in a manifesto, filled with vague aspirations, in splendid isolation from other policy areas
That approach doesn’t work for the modern Conservative Party. Protecting the Environment is one of the five main sections of the paper. It contains nearly 50 specific green commitments, on everything from climate change to recycling to sustainable energy.
But it’s not just this section. The environment pervades the whole document, breaking out of the ghetto. A key plank of our strategy for recovery is building a greener economy. Our transport policy will promote high speed rail and reject unsustainable developments, like a third runway at Heathrow. Our international development policy sees climate change adaptation as one of the key challenges. And sustainability is central to our energy policy.
Everywhere you look in the document, the environment is there. Everywhere you look, Conservatives are identifying environmental problems and opportunities and proposing policies to address these.
Should there be any doubt as to the leadership shown by Conservative environmental policies, you need only look at the Labour manifesto. It has no floor price for carbon, no offshore grid to promote marine energy and no incentives for recycling. On the environment, as on so many other areas, the ambition and the change are all coming from Conservatives.