We at Ealing Labour recognise that the climate emergency is one of the biggest issues affecting our borough and beyond. That’s why, after declaring a climate emergency in 2019, we’ve re-committed our support to the Local Electricity Bill.
In recognising the need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote renewable energy, and the very high financial price involved in selling locally generated renewable electricity to local customers, Labour-run Ealing Council signed up to support the Local Electricity Bill after passing a motion expressing our support at Full Council in October 2021.
The Bill, which supported by over 300 MPs, would, if made law, establish a Right to Local Supply, which would promote local renewable electricity supply companies and co- operatives by making the setup and running costs of selling renewable electricity to local customers proportionate to the size of the supply operation.
The Local Electricity Bill, despite clear support, isn’t yet law – which makes it clear that the Government are making the wrong calls on waste and energy. For example, the Government’s recent proposal to extend the windfall tax applies a levy to local authority generated electricity from waste whilst Shell and BP are able to use a loophole to ensure that they are exempt from this tax. The Government must close this loophole so that oil and gas producers are paying their fair share of tax, rather than indirectly charging the taxpayer.
But in the meantime, Ealing Labour are stepping in where the Government won’t. Signing up to the Local Electricity Bill and campaigning to close the windfall tax is just one part of Ealing Labour’s ambitious agenda to make Ealing a cleaner, greener borough. We’ve already published our ambitious climate and ecological emergency strategy, setting out how we’ll make Ealing carbon neutral by 2030. We’ve also installed 130 electric vehicle charging points, bringing us to 300 in total, with hundreds more planned, and we’ve also retrofitted close to a hundred homes this year. We’ve also launched our Travel in Ealing Charter,
setting out how we will deliver active travel in the borough and we’re investing at least £10m to increase cycling, walking, running, and scooting and reduce polluting vehicles through active travel schemes.
We’re proud of the action that we’ve taken in Ealing. However, we know there’s much more we need to do. If we are to become carbon-neutral and use more local renewable energysources, sustainability must be at the heart of all we do.
It is clear that we must go further and faster on the green energy transition by taking on Conservative failures to build a strong renewable industry, and only a Labour Government can deliver this.