David's Views: Environment
Having a clean and pleasant place in which to live is something that nearly everyone would agree with. The problem arises when people try to decide how to achieve this and what the real environment issues are.
In my view the main issues are:
- Sustainable living - we must live within resource means of the planet.
- Pollution - whether this is the air we breathe, the water we drink or the land we live on.
- Planning - the way we develop our housing, employment and leisure sites is vital to the everyday environment in which we live.
- Biodiversity - to have a diverse range of plants in the countryside.
- Transport is crucial to both the environmental health and economic health of the country, congested roads benefit neither.
- Power Generation - oil, coal, gas and nuclear power sources all generate waste that is harmful for the environment we must make far greater use of renewable energy.
- Saving natural heritage - national park areas and designated areas of outstanding natural beauty are important and should be protected with special planning regulations.
So my views are:
- Sustainable living can only really be brought about by a combination of education and regulation, for example education on the need for recycling plus regulation to make goods recyclable and reduce packaging.
- Pollution must be reduced, industries must be made to dispose of any waste product in the safest possible manner. This would not only improve the environment but also boost the industry to develop cleaner processes and the waste management industry.
- Planning law and building regulations could be improved to enable greater use of solar heating, better insulation, better public transport, better use of rainfall water, more efficient heating systems, like micro-CHP heating and so on.
- Promoting farming methods like organic farming and supporting farmers for the work they do in caring for the countryside are the main ways to obtain greater bio-diversity in the countryside.
- All our major urban areas have traffic congestion and all our major urban areas should have good public transport networks of bus, tram, rail and underground. The transport of last resort in urban areas should be the car. Currently we do not have a public transport network similar to other European countries and the transport of first choice is the car.
- There needs to be a sustained public investment in public transport to improve the rail network, create light rail/tram schemes and to have underground systems in all our major cities.
The bottom line:
- We should safeguard and improve the environment in which we live because it is our children's future.