Economy tied with the environment

ECONOMIC gloom and news of job losses in both the City and more locally are bad for the people who are affected. The effects on the local economy are slowly starting to show in reduced advertising revenue, increases in housing waiting lists and more peop

ECONOMIC gloom and news of job losses in both the City and more locally are bad for the people who are affected.

The effects on the local economy are slowly starting to show in reduced advertising revenue, increases in housing waiting lists and more people claiming benefits.

The initial instinct of many of us is to try to put the clock back.

There will be some who say that we need to forget the environment for a few years whilst we put the economy right, not realising that the two are bound together and are not alternatives.


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In the past few days the government's Independent Climate Change Commission has said carbon emissions must be cut by at least 80 per cent by 2050 and that the emissions from all aviation and shipping must no longer be ignored.

New jobs are needed; but not any job at any cost. On present forecasts, jobs from aviation could account for about 1.5 per cent of all jobs in this region.

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We are supposed to be cutting the carbon we put into the atmosphere, yet CO2 emissions from Stansted Airport alone in 2030/31 would use up half of the region's total CO2 allowance and by 2050 require the entire CO2 budget to achieve a 60 percent reduction.

An 80 per cent carbon emissions reduction would be even more impossible to achieve if aviation is not constrained.

It is time that politicians from all parties worked together with business to develop an economy and to grow jobs that make environmental sense.

We must hope that the present government and any future government of whatever party or parties provides the leadership to help us all get out of the present economic mess in a better environmental shape. Carrying on with the failed policies from the past is simply not an option.

Alan Dean, Uttlesford councillor for Stansted South Recreation Ground, Stansted

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