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Friends of the Earth: Climate Change Not Fuel Prices The Real Energy Crisis

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  • P. Neuman self only
    Friends of the Earth s... The Government must take urgent action to protect our environment and economy by reducing our dependence on oil. It is a major
    Message 1 of 1 , Jun 1 4:20 PM
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      Friends of the Earth's...

      "The Government must take urgent action to protect our environment and
      economy by reducing our dependence on oil. It is a major contributor to
      global climate change, and ties our economy too closely to an
      increasingly
      volatile supply. There are alternatives, but the Government is not doing
      enough to promote them."


      CLIMATE CHANGE NOT FUEL PRICES: THE REAL ENERGY CRISIS
      Jun 1
      http://www.foe.co.uk/resource/press_releases/climate_change_not_fuel_pr_0
      1062004.html

      The Government must take urgent action to reduce the nation's dependence
      on
      oil, Friends of the Earth said today. The call comes as concerns grow
      about
      world tensions and rising oil prices. Alternatives to oil and a dramatic
      improvement in fuel efficiency are needed to improve economic stability
      and
      help the fight against global climate change - the biggest environmental
      threat the planet faces.

      Friends of the Earth urged action as the Chancellor, Gordon Brown, is
      under
      pressure from the roads lobby and industry over rising oil prices. He has
      called on OPEC (Oil Producing and Exporting Countries) ministers, meeting
      on
      Thursday, to increase oil production, but Friends of the Earth warned
      that
      this is not a long-term solution. Fluctuations in production and price
      are
      likely to happen again. Oil is one of the biggest contributors to the
      production of carbon dioxide, the main climate-changing gas.

      Friends of the Earth's climate campaigner Tony Bosworth said

      "The Government must take urgent action to protect our environment and
      economy by reducing our dependence on oil. It is a major contributor to
      global climate change, and ties our economy too closely to an
      increasingly
      volatile supply. There are alternatives, but the Government is not doing
      enough to promote them."

      The transport sector is responsible for 27 per cent of the UK's carbon
      dioxide emissions [1]. The Government must do more to reduce this
      sector's
      dependence on oil and help tackle climate change.

      Friends of the Earth is calling on the Government to adopt the following
      measures:

      Ensure that the motor industry makes and sells more fuel-efficient
      vehicles

      Motor vehicles could be significantly more fuel efficient than they
      currently are. New cars are generally more fuel-efficient than older
      models,
      but the motor industry is unlikely to meet its voluntary pledge for new
      cars
      sold in Europe to have average emissions of 140 grams per kilometre by
      2008/9. Last year new cars sold in the UK emitted, on average 172.8 grams
      of
      carbon dioxide per kilometre. New targets should be introduced and made
      legally-binding.

      Introduce financial and legal incentives to promote biofuels

      Biofuels are renewable and, compared to petrol or diesel, offer up to a
      70
      per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions. Some biofuels can be
      readily
      used by vehicles, others will require cars being adapted. Biofuels can
      also
      be added as a mix to oil-based fuel. Friends of the Earth is supporting
      calls for the Energy Bill, currently progressing through Parliament, to
      be
      amended to ensure that petrol suppliers source an increasing percentage
      of
      their products from renewable sources.

      Greater support for public transport, walking and cycling

      Despite Government promises, traffic levels continue to rise. The
      Government
      is currently reviewing its 10 year transport plan and is expected to
      announce new priorities and spending plans next month. This must include
      more investment in providing alternatives to car use rather than more
      road-building and motorway-widening. Friends of the Earth is part of the
      Way
      To Go coalition of 29 transport, environment and social justice
      organisations (www.waytogo.org.uk)

      Financial incentives to encourage motorists to use their cars less.

      According to the latest Government figures motoring costs have fallen by
      4.8% since Labour came to office (whilst rail costs have gone up three
      per
      cent and bus travel by 8.2 per cent) Motoring is also cheaper now in real
      terms, than it was 30 years ago [2]. Friends of the Earth wants the
      Chancellor to use fuel tax to ensure that motoring costs do not fall
      further. This will encourage people to buy more fuel-efficient cars and
      discourage unnecessary car journeys. Congestion charging - which has led
      to
      a 19 per cent fall in emissions of carbon dioxide in London's congestion
      zone, as well as a 30 per cent reduction in congestion - should also be
      introduced to other areas.

      Higher road taxes for gas-guzzling vehicles.

      The Chancellor has cut road tax for the most fuel efficient vehicles.
      Friends of the Earth is calling for him to raise tax levels for the most
      fuel-inefficient cars.

      More support for rail freight

      Since 1990, emissions of climate-changing gases from the freight industry
      have risen by 59%. The Government must do more to get freight on rail by
      investing in rail freight infrastructure and .reintroducing grants to
      encourage businesses to switch from road to rail freight.

      Introduce demand management measures for aviation

      Emissions of carbon dioxide from aviation are set to rise rapidly in
      coming
      years following the Government's recent decision to allow a massive
      expansion in air travel. By 2020 aviation could account for 10-12% of all
      UK
      emissions of carbon dioxide. Urgent action is needed to introduce
      measures
      to manage demand for aviation including making airlines pay tax on the
      fuel
      the use, which they currently do not.

      A briefing is available from Friends of the Earth

      [1]
      http://www.sustainable-development.gov.uk/sustainable/quality04/maind/04n
      03.htm

      [2]

      http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm200304/cmhansrd/cm040317/text/
      40317w05.htm#40317w05.html_sbhd7
      =======

      visit:
      http://groups.yahoo.com/group/AviationWatch/


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