Prospective parliamentary candidate responses to our questions

(c) Guy Edwardes 2020 Vision(c) Guy Edwardes 2020 Vision

We are asking all the prospective parliamentary candidates in Derbyshire three questions about the environment and will publish their responses here.

We asked:

 1. What will you do to ensure our wildlife laws remain strong and will you support an ambitious new Environment Act for England to restore the damage that has been done to nature?
2. What will you do to ensure that wildlife thrives in our seas once more?
3. What will you do to ensure we have new farming policies in each part of the UK to provide for nature’s recovery?
 

We have contacted all of the candidates listed below, and will update the website with their responses as they come in.

Please note: These are the responses of your prospective parliamentary candidates and do not reflect the views of Derbyshire Wildlife Trust.

Amber Valley 

Daniel Bamford (Independent)

Response:

As you will see, the main reason that I decided to stand as an Independent Candidate was because of the absence of an official UKIP candidate in Amber Valley. So, most of what I have written below is an endorsement of existing
UKIP policies. Indeed, much of what I have written simply quotes the 2017 UKIP manifesto verbatim. I will now answer your three questions directly:
1. What will I do to ensure our wildlife laws remain strong and will I support an ambitious new Environment Act for England to restore the damage that has been done to nature?
Yes, I agree that we need a new Environment Act, but it is important to make it clear that many EU laws have done great damage to the environment, so I would oppose any blanket adoption of EU environment laws into British law. For example, The way the EU and the British government embraced diesel proved to be disastrous. The Water Framework Directive led to serious flooding in many parts of the country by preventing river dredging. I therefore endorse UKIP’s proposed new Environmental Protection Act.
‘The EU’s Common Agricultural Policy has damaged our countryside. We should support farming and wildlife though grant schemes prioritising the preservation of natural habitats. We must also prioritise brownfield rather than greenfield or agricultural land for new housing.’
‘Major infrastructure projects will be required to give much more respect to irreplaceable natural habitats.
HS2 is a prime example of this: we will scrap HS2 and ensure no infrastructure project will ever again be allowed permission to wreak such catastrophic environmental damage.’
I would like to remind you that the Conservative MP for Amber Valley, Nigel Mills, actually voted in favour of the HS2 programme. This really surprised me given his supposed commitment to investment in existing regional railways and local train stations at Langley Mill and Alfreton. Even if we assess HS2 purely in terms of Mr. Mills’ narrow business interests, it should be obvious that HS2 will be totally
counterproductive: It will not help boost regional economies in the Midlands and the North, as it will actually suck more money, jobs and people down into London. This is exactly what happened as a result of the high speed rail system in Spain: It did not regenerate regional economies, but just helped suck more money and jobs into Madrid.
2. What will I do to ensure that wildlife thrives in our seas once more?
The EU Common Fisheries Policy has devastated fish stocks around our coastline. I highly recommend the relevant segment in ‘Brexit: The Movie’, which should still be available to view free online. I endorse the UKIP policy to protect dolphins by banning the use of pair trawling for sea bass’ (which was also in the 2015 UKIP manifesto). I also support the recent protest by the Prince of Wales against plastic waste in the sea, which breaks down into microplastics which are ingested by plankton, shellfish, shrimp, fish, birds, turtles, other sea animals and ultimately humans. We will investigate the practicality of introducing a deposit scheme on plastic drinks bottles to encourage recycling.
3. What will I do to ensure we have new farming policies in each part of the UK to provide for nature’s recovery?
When we leave the EU, we will leave the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) and regain the power to prioritise our own farming objectives, boost our own food security, reform our attitude to farming, animal welfare and wildlife management, and reinvigorate our rural economy. I therefore endorse UKIP’s proposed new UK Single Farm Payment (SFP) that would operate in a similar way to the present EU system, but would be more ethical. UKIP will consider transferring some support to those livestock producers who commit to farming without antibiotics. Organic farms will be paid 25 per cent more, and additional support will be given to hill farmers. Only when we have left the EU can we regain control of animal health and welfare issues. Currently, EU law prevents us from banning live exports for slaughter, and prevents us from labelling food that has been ritually killed as halal or shechita. UKIP campaigns against the EU’s stance on both.

For more details, please see the UKIP 2017 ‘Britain Together’ Manifesto.
Finally, it is easy for me to sit here copying and pasting text from the UKIP manifesto and making promises about the future, but what have I ever done in the past to show that I am genuinely concerned about the conservation of the natural environment and wildlife? Well, from September 2002 to September 2003, I worked on a fixed-term contract as a Public Relations and Media Assistant for the Erewash and Amber Valley branch of an environmental regeneration charity called Groundwork. One of the partner organisations that I helped to promote was actually the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. I also took the opportunity to take part in a conservation volunteer camp at the Lueneburg Heath Nature Reserve in Lower Saxony, Germany. This was organised in collaboration with the Peak District National Park.
If you check your records, then you will find that several years ago I contacted Derbyshire Wildlife Trust in order to report the presence of brown hares in my local area. I was particularly concerned about the impact on the hares of recent housing developments and the habit of some local residents of letting their dogs off the lead in fields where there was no public right of way. So, I would like to remind you that Conservative plans to repeal the ban on hunting with dogs will not only allow the return of fox hunting with hounds, but also allow the return of ‘hare coursing’. Unfortunately, the media often refer to this law inaccurately as the ‘fox hunting ban’. Relatives in rural Leicestershire tell me that a lot of farmers are really hostile to fox hunting with hounds, because the hunters trespass on private land and damage a lot of fences, while the fox population can be more efficiently controlled by tracking them down to their fox holes with a shot gun. Far from repealing the ban, I think it
needs tightening up in order to make it properly enforceable. I also volunteered to inspect public rights of way for Derbyshire County Council last year. This involved checking numerous public footpaths across farmland.

 

James Dawson (Labour)

Matt McGuinness (Green Party)

Nigel Mills (Conservative)

Kate Smith (Liberal Democrat)

Response:

The Liberal Democrats are committed to the environment and wildlife countrywide and I am committed particularly in our local area as we have one of the most beautiful places to live.

If you look at our manifesto which you can find at www.libdems.org.uk/manifesto and look at the full version at the bottom of the page. Under section 5.4 you will see our commitments to protecting nature.

I will continue to campaign for a green energy supply and animal welfare rights; whether I am successful in this election or not.

Bolsover 

Helen Harrison (Conservative)

Philip Rose (UK Independence Party)

Response:

1) I may support an Environment Act for the UK but it would need to be very robust and far reaching - My guess is that it may be draconian and compromised from the start - and fail to protect against special interests - let us see…. but on the face of it yes I would support such an Act.

2) - I would back a Bill which gives animals the same protections against torture and cruelty as humans. I note New Zealand has implemented a law acknowledging animals as sentient. I am not sure what the EU has done for animal welfare? Hunting is rife - on continental europe, Spain continues the barbaric Bull-fighting’ and other grotesque practices of animal torture, Denmark allows people to engage in sexual activity with dogs for goodness sake! I want to see protections for all life - I will work with all relevant bodies to bring about legislation that will 1) Protect wildlife 2) encourage plant based diets 3) End trade in wild animals, 4) ban animal farms and the import of animal fur 5) End experiments on animals 6) Develop sanctions against nations which fail to treat animal life with compassion and respect 7) Ensure children receive appropriate education re: compassion and understanding of animal life 8) Develop a sense of societal responsibility to empathise with other animals - Thats a start anyway!

3) New farming policies: A revolution in farming - 1) Educate society to move away from the consumption of animals and milk stolen from babies 2) Move toward growing Hemp and increase arable farming while incentivising the retention and development of hedgerows, plantations and natural spaces 3) reduce motor traffic in national parks by encouraging visitors to use public transport (e.g. Re-open the Matlock to Buxton railway through the Peak Park) 4) I would look to champion a new approach to human treatment of other animals worldwide - with the idea that we are custodians and facilitators NOT exploiters of animal life.
 

Ross Shipman (Liberal Democrat)

Response:

The Liberal Democrats are committed to the environment and wildlife countrywide and I am committed particularly in our local area as we have one of the most beautiful places to live.

If you look at our manifesto which you can find at www.libdems.org.uk/manifesto and look at the full version at the bottom of the page. Under section 5.4 you will see our commitments to protecting nature.

I will continue to campaign for a green energy supply and animal welfare rights; whether I am successful in this election or not.
 

Dennis Skinner (Labour)

Chesterfield 

Stuart Bent (UK Independence Party)

Toby Perkins (Labour)

Spencer Pitfield (Conservative)

Tom Snowdon (Liberal Democrat)

David Wadsworth (Green Party)

Response:

1. Our environment has befitted from the current EU directives, and Green party policy is that we need protections at least as strong after we leave the EU. The Green Party would introduce an Environmental Protection Act to safeguard those UK environmental laws which are based on our membership of the EU. We are also fundamentally opposed to fracking, and would ban it across the UK. We will ensure that wildlife crime is prosecuted and will keep the ban on hunting with dogs.

2. Green Party policy is, put bluntly, to stop taking so much wildlife from the sea. We would consider not only fish numbers, but also the socio-economic aspects of the fishing industry, removing the most damaging, large scale fishing practices such as gill-netting, deep-sea long-lining and scallop dredging, in favour of smaller in-shore vessels. We would reduce the size of the UK fleet by continuing the vessel decommissioning scheme and also work towards an ecologically coherent network of Marine Protected Areas, including 30% as no-take zones.

3. Whilst agricultural policy is devolved to the Scottish, Welsh and Irish Governments, Green Party policies call for farming to recognise the value of all ecosystem services and biodiversity. They are based on the fact that everyone has the right to a sufficient supply of nutritious and safe food to lead a healthy life and that production for human need must be consistent with the wider need to protect and restore natural ecosystems and biological diversity.

We believe that agricultural production, processing and distribution must:
(a) be sustainable over the short and long term;
(b) provide nutritious and healthy food;
(c) support diversity and local food markets;
(d) be fair to farmer, distributor and consumer;
(e) respect animal welfare.
 

Derby North 

Lucy Care (Liberal Democrat)

Bill Piper (UK Independence Party)

Amanda Solloway (Conservative)

Chris Williamson (Labour)

Derby South 

Dame Margaret Beckett (Labour)

Response:

I am very proud of our manifesto and I would urge you to look through it, if you have not already done so.  The full manifesto can be found here: http://www.labour.org.uk/index.php/manifesto2017

On the environment and in relation to our seas we have said:

"Labour will introduce a new Clean Air Act to deal with the Conservative legacy of illegal air quality.  We will safeguard habitats and species in the 'blue belts' of the seas and oceans surrounding our island.  We will set guiding targets for plastic bottle deposit schemes, working with food manufacturers and retailers to reduce waste. We will protect our bees by prohibiting neonicotinoids as soon as our EU relationship allows us to do so. We will work with farmers and foresters to plant a million trees of native species to promote biodiversity and better flood management.  Unlike the Conservatives who attempted to privatise our forests, Labour will keep them in public hands."

"Our stewardship of the environment needs to be founded on sound principles and based on scientific assessments.  We will establish a science innovation fund, working with farmers and fisheries, that will include support for our small scale fishing fleet".

With regard to the sustainable farming we have said:

"Will will champion sustainable farming, food and fishing by investing in and promoting skills, technology, market access and innovation."

"Labour will also protect our farmers and rural economy by ensuring Britain continues to set the highest standards in food quality and welfare. We will not allow Brexit to be used as an excuse to undercut our farmers and flood Britain's foodchain with cheap and inferior produce."

On animal welfare in general, in our manifesto we commit to increasing the maximum sentence for those convicted of committing animal cruelty and maintaining the bans on fox hunting, deer hunting and hare coursing.

We also have commitments to promoting cruelty-free animal husbandry and consulting on ways to ensure better enforcement of agreed standards; prohibiting the third-party sale of puppies; introducing and enforcing a total ban on ivory trading, and supporting the ban on wild animals in circuses.  We are also committed to ceasing the badger cull, which spreads bovine TB.

On a personal note, I was the Secretary of State who put the legislation on fox hunting through the House of Commons and my views have not changed.

 

Alan Graves (UK Independence Party)

Response:

1. I believe that as a country we need to ensure building on our green lands is heavily restricted and that local people have more of a say in large planning applications, even a right to appeal a passed application. An Environment Act needs to work with the planning laws to ensure one does not override the other.
2. We need to take back our territorial waters and ensure that only British fishermen can fish our waters thus ensuring caught fish are not returned to the sea, dead. This will ensure our fishermen have a vested interest in the waters they sail. We need to commit our country to sustainable fishing linked with and Environment Act that protects the seas from pollution.
3. Clearly this needs to be part of the Environment Act linked with our Agricultural policies. Taken directly from our manifesto we need to ‘regain the power to prioritise our own farming objectives, boost our own food security, reform our attitude to farming, animal welfare and wildlife management, and reinvigorate our rural economy’

One subject that does crop up on many emails is animal welfare type questions.
I am pleased to tell you I am an animal lover and have owned many animals including several dogs. If I was your elected member of parliament and a vote came up to repeal fox hunting I would vote against. I also care about our society and would fight to protect our elderly, our less abled and our children. Pensioners would have their pensions protected, those with disabilities would be treated fairly and our children need to be looked after the best we can in society.
 

Joe Naitta (Liberal Democrat)

Response:

The Liberal Democrats are committed to the environment and wildlife countrywide and I am committed particularly in our local area as we have one of the most beautiful places to live.
If you look at our manifesto which you can find at www.libdems.org.uk/manifesto and look at the full version at the bottom of the page. Under section 5.4 you will see our commitments to protecting nature.
I will continue to campaign for a green energy supply and animal welfare rights; whether I am successful in this election or not.
In addition to this we in Derby have set up a community orchard the first of it's type in my ward, we look after our nature reserve with Friends of Littleover Parks as well.
We are looking to develop this further and are looking for funding to enhance our green spaces.
 

Ian Sleeman (Green Party)

Evonne Williams (Conservative)

Derbyshire Dales 

Andrew Botham (Labour)

Matthew Buckler (Green Party)

Response:

1) The EU Directives that protect the environment have been good news for the UK and I believe, and it is Green Party policy, that it is of fundamental importance that environmental protections are at least as good after we leave the EU as they are now. The Green Party would introduce an Environmental Protection Act to safeguard those UK environmental laws which are based on our membership of the EU. We are also fundamentally opposed to fracking, and would ban it across the UK.

We will ensure that wildlife crime is prosecuted and will keep the ban on hunting with dogs.

2. Green Party policy is to move to a precautionary principle so that there is no longer a presumption in favour of fishing. We would consider not only fish numbers in decision-making on quotas, but also the socio-economic aspects of the fishing industry, removing the most damaging, large scale fishing practices such as gill-netting, deep-sea long-lining and scallop dredging, in favour of smaller in-shore vessels.

We would reduce the size of the UK fleet by continuing the vessel decommissioning scheme and also work towards an ecologically coherent network of Marine Protected Areas, including 30% as no-take zones.

3. Whilst agricultural policy is devolved to the Scottish, Welsh and Irish Governments, Green Party policies call for farming to recognise the value of all ecosystem services and biodiversity. They are based on the fact that everyone has the right to a sufficient supply of nutritious and safe food to lead a healthy life and that production for human need must be consistent with the wider need to protect and restore natural ecosystems and biological diversity.

We believe that agricultural production, processing and distribution
must:
(a) be sustainable over the short and long term;
(b) provide nutritious and healthy food;
(c) support diversity and local food markets;
(d) be fair to farmer, distributor and consumer;
(e) respect animal welfare.
 

Robin Greenwood (Humanity Party)

Response:

I am committed to the most rigorous protection of the environment and biodiversity that we can achieve. I am happy to support any new environmental legislation that protects and enhances biodiversity. I own 22 acres of land in Herefordshire which I am seeking to develop as the home of a low impact self-sufficient community - I have had the Herefordshire Wildlife Trust out to look at my plans and they are satisfied that the biodiversity of the land is safeguarded and enhanced in them. While I'm not particularly keen on subsidising farmers, I notice that in the last couple of years, the threshhold for Basic Farm Payment has been lifted from 1 hectare to 5 hectares, meaning that support for very smallholders has been withdrawn - industrial farming appears to be the form of farming favoured by European legislation.

I am happy to say that I would defer to those who have expertise in protecting the seas and wildlife in making policy in these areas. It is clear to me that diversity has been reduced and habitats threatened or completely wiped out by industrial development over the last 50 years.
For the planet to survive, we need to end this trend and begin to re-populate the country with wildlife that has left it.

In the UK we consume around four times as much as the planet can
globally sustain. This is completely unacceptable. It is perfectly
possible to live happily and healthily in harmony with nature without plundering its resources. It is time to do so!
 

Andrew Hollyer (Liberal Democrat)

Response:

1. Liberal Democrats believe that we must keep the environment at the top of the agenda. Britain’s natural environment is precious. The countryside, wildlife and urban green spaces are critical to health, wellbeing and a sense of community. The quality of the environment also underpins key industries such as agriculture and tourism. Liberal Democrats will significantly increase the amount of accessible green space, including completion of the coastal path, and create a new designation of National Nature Parks to protect up to a million acres of accessible green space valued by local communities. We will also reverse the current sharp decline in the rate of woodland creation by aiming to plant a tree for every UK citizen over the next ten years, and protect remaining ancient woodlands. Liberal Democrats will pass a Nature Act to put the Natural Capital Committee (NCC) on a statutory footing, set legally binding natural capital targets, including on biodiversity, clean air and water, and empower the NCC to recommend actions to meet these targets.

2. I believe it is vital that we protect the UK’s marine environment because marine conservation not only promotes diverse wildlife in UK waters, but it can deliver real economic benefits too. The Lib Dems are committed to protecting our oceans - for example, as part of the Coalition Government we designated 27 Marine Conservation Zones, which are helping to preserve and protect marine habitats and species in UK waters. Lib Dems will also protect and restore England’s lakes, rivers and wetlands, including through reform of water management and higher water efficiency standards, and establish a ‘blue belt’ of marine protected areas.

3. Lib Dems will continue our long campaign to reform agricultural subsidies – making sure British farming remains competitive and doesn’t lose out in the event of Britain leaving the EU, rebalancing away from direct subsidy and refocusing support towards the public goods that come from effective land management including countryside protection, flood prevention, food production, and climate change mitigation. This would ensure that smaller farms are protected and move support away from large landowners, whilst delivering a more localised agricultural policy.
 

 Patrick McLoughlin (Conservative)

Erewash 

Catherine Atkinson (Labour)

Response:

1. Erewash is a beautiful constituency and I know many people, as I do, will want to see our environment and wildlife protected. I am concerned about the Conservatives' threatened 'bonfire of red tape' as a threat to our environmental protections. As a Labour MP I will defend and extend our existing environmental protections rather than allowing them to be eroded. For example, I want to see bees protected by prohibiting neonicotinoids as soon as possible. I will certainly consider at the environmental implications of any legislation, including an Environment Act if one is brought forward, before deciding whether to support it.

2. Our oceans have been used as dumping grounds. If elected I will support action to safeguard habitats and species in the 'blue belts' of the seas and oceans surrounding Britain.

3. Our farms face an uncertain future and if elected I will support action to give farming a sustainable future. I will support work with farmers and foresters to plant a million trees of native species to promote biodiversity and better flood management. I would also support ceasing the badger cull.
 

Roy Dunn (Independent)

Martin Garnett (Liberal Democrat)

Response:

Thank you for taking the time to contact me regarding wildlife and the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust. Liberal Democrats believe that the countryside, wildlife and urban green spaces are critical to health, wellbeing and a sense of community. We will continue to fight to protect and support Britain’s wildlife. We will pass a Nature Act, which will put the Natural Capital Committee (NCC) on a statutory footing. We will also set legally binding natural capital targets, including on biodiversity, clean air and water, and empower the NCC to recommend actions to meet these targets. As well as this, we will reverse the current sharp decline in the rate of woodland creation by aiming to plant a tree for every UK citizen over the next ten years, and protect remaining ancient woodlands. We will also suspend the use of neonicotinoids until proven that their use in agriculture does not harm bees or other pollinators.
Liberal Democrats will protect and restore England’s lakes, rivers and wetlands, including through reform of water management and higher water efficiency standards, and establish a ‘blue belt’ of marine protected areas. The Common Fisheries Policy has failed to deliver, but a hard Brexit and the loss of export markets threatens to further damage the industry, which has long suffered from being used as a bargaining chip by UK governments. Liberal Democrats would work with the industry and other stakeholders to develop a national plan for sustainable fisheries.
Liberal Democrats will continue our long campaign to reform agricultural subsidies – making sure British farming remains competitive and doesn’t lose out in the event of Britain leaving the EU, rebalancing away from direct subsidy and refocusing support towards the public goods that come from effective land management including countryside protection, flood prevention, food production, and climate change mitigation. This would ensure that smaller farms are protected and move support away from large landowners, whilst delivering a more localised agricultural policy.
 

Ralph Hierons (Green Party)

Response:

As you can probably imagine, the Green Party has many policies regarding wildlife, and they often cross over into many other areas of environmental protection.

For instance, nationally and in Erewash the Green Party has been a vocal opposition to the HS2 which will have a severe impact on local wildlife. The East route 2B cuts through 11 irreplaceable ancient woodland sites destroying the natural habitats of native wildlife. It also cuts through so many other wildlife havens, whether they be nature reserves, common ground or private hedgerows. It is also a huge waste of money that would be better spent improving the existing rail network, and it will destroy homes and communities in Erewash as it ploughs through Long Eaton and Sandiacre.

Regarding the post-brexit environment, I am entirely commited to upholding and strengthening the existing EU laws that relate to protecting our environment and seeing them transferred into UK law. In this article https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/feb/13/green-guarantee-br... Green MP Caroline Lucas states a ‘green guarantee’ could stop Brexit ruining our environment.

"We need a “green guarantee” that will deliver on Leadsom’s commitment “to be the first generation to leave our environment better than we found it”. This would take the shape of a coherent plan to maintain and enhance environmental standards, ambitions and drivers during and after the Brexit process.

Central to a green guarantee would be a commitment to continued membership of cross-border organisations such as the European Environment Agency, introducing key concepts like the precautionary principle into the UK statute – meaning that laws aren’t passed that risk environmental damage. It would also involve creating a new environment act to ensure no protections slip through the net as regulations are transferred to Britain."

This is the national party's view and it is the message I am bringing to Erewash. We cannot allow the referendum result to be used to weaken our environmental protections.

Our Animal Manifesto from the 2015 election pledged the following:

"Wildlife cannot survive without a home, which is why we support a new Nature and Wellbeing Act and will protect the EU Habitats and Birds Directives against any attempts to weaken them. We will ensure that our valuable wild spaces are properly protected and will prioritise action to reverse both habitat loss and the precipitous decline in our wildlife.
We will take action to protect pollinators, including developing pollinator-friendly pesticide strategies. We will also continue to push for an end to whaling and keeping cetaceans in captivity. We will guarantee funding for the Wildlife Crime Unit and take
coordinated action to tackle wildlife crime both in the UK and across the globe, recognising its link to global crime networks."

Whilst waste and pollution are a serious threat to sealife I will continue to push for an end to non-biodegradable single-use packaging and increase recycling; promote renewable energy sources over fossil-fuels thus improving air quality and removing the need for oil pipelines and tankers; and make environmental education a priority so that future generations are endowed with a sense of responsibility with regard to their local and global environment.

I will stand for the issues (on farming) as raised in the Green Party policy document which states:

"These rural areas, which we collectively know as the Countryside, also represent the habitats for the greater proportion of wildlife in England and Wales. Habitats and their plant and animal communities are also under great stress from the demands of the total human population and from climate change and other environmental impacts. Some habitats are globally rare or unique to the British Islands and we have international obligations to conserve them.
In developing our policies for the countryside, the Green Party recognises the conflicting interests behind the pressures faced by both the human and nonhuman populations. By doing so we seek to protect and enhance quality of life, not only for rural communities, but also for urban populations that rely on the many services provided by the countryside. These include the supply of food, water and natural resources and for a wide range of recreational pursuits ranging from the casual to highly organised events that are enhanced by or depend on their rural setting.

The Green Party will seek to integrate environmental, social and economic objectives in all areas of countryside and rural policy, with the overall aims to:
a) Revitalise the economy and life of rural communities;
b) Legislate to reform land tenure and access to land;
c) Legislate to stop further destruction of wildlife habitats, the soil, the landscape, ancient monuments and our countryside heritage;
d) Enact policies that will make the whole countryside more hospitable to wildlife, entailing increased protection for wildlife and habitats and delivery of meaningful landscape-scale conservation and restoration;
e) Increase the area and quality of woods, orchards, agroforestry, hedges and other tree cover;
f) Ensure food security, integrating human health and wellbeing, environmental protection, animal welfare and decent livelihoods for farmers, farm workers and growers;
f) Reduce greenhouse gas emissions and develop appropriate renewable energy especially at local and community level. "
 

Maggie Throup (Conservative)

Response:

On 20th March, I signed the Greener UK Environment Pledge. You can find the press release on my website at: https://www.maggiethroup.com/news/erewash-mp-signs-environment-pledge

Obviously this refers to me as the MP, but is still relevant as the Prospective Conservative MP for Erewash.

I did not need a General Election to make this pledge.

 

High Peak 

Andrew Bingham (Conservative)

Ruth George (Labour)

Charles Lawley (Liberal Democrat)

Response:

I will ensure our we continue to fight for Britain’s wildlife. I will vote to pass a Nature Act, which will put the Natural Capital Committee (NCC) on a statutory footing. I will also back a natural capital targets, including on biodiversity, clean air and water, and give the NCC to the power recommend actions to meet these targets. I want to see us prevent woodland reducing at an alarming rate. I back us planting a tree for every UK citizen over the next ten years. I want a suspension in neonicotinoids

I want there to be more done for Derbyshire's lakes, rivers and wetlands. There should be reform of water management and higher water efficiency standards. I'm in favour of establishing a ‘blue belt’ of marine protected areas. Hard Brexit and the loss of export markets threatens to further damage the industry, which has long suffered from being used as a bargaining chip by UK governments.Let's work with the fishing industry and other stakeholders to ensure sustainability.

I back the Liberal Democrats in continuing our long campaign to reform agricultural subsidies. We want to make sure British farming remains competitive and doesn’t lose out in the event of Britain leaving the EU, rebalancing away from direct subsidy and refocusing support towards the public goods that come from effective land management including countryside protection, flood prevention, food production, and climate change mitigation. This would ensure that smaller farms are protected and move support away from large landowners, whilst delivering a more localised agricultural policy.
 

Mid Derbyshire

Pauline Latham (Conservative)

Sue MacFarlane (Green Party)

Alison Martin (Labour)

Adam Wain (Liberal Democrat)

North East Derbyshire

James Bush (UK Independence Party)

Natascha Engels (Labour)

David Kesteven (Green Party)

David Lomax (Liberal Democrat)

Lee Rowley (Conservative)

South Derbyshire

Lorraine Johnson (Liberal Democrat)

Marten Kats (Green Party)

Response:

1. Now the United Kingdom has voted to leave the European Union, we have a challenge on our hand to ensure that we keep the EU protection for wildlife and the environment at the very least. In my opinion, we should go even further than that and greatly strengthen legislation. A strong new Environment Act is in my opinion vital to protect our environment and wildlife.

2. Various measures need to be taken to protect our seas. This includes clear regulation on fishing. Furthermore, we need independent and fair assessment of the coastal erosive impact of offshore dredging, the re-instatement of money taken from the sea defence budget and protective systems based upon the needs of people and the environment rather than corporate profit. Further, that modern sustainable and effective sea-defences be employed rather than those currently dependent upon building beaches already eroded by 'recharge', i.e. using even more sand dredged from the offshore seabed.

3. We will support sustainable agriculture and farming practices to help conserve and enhance land and other agricultural resources for future generations. Sustainable agriculture must be used to prevent loss of soil structure and nutrients and the soil erosion, desertification and salinisation that currently threaten the availability of agricultural land and future food security.
 

Robert Pearson (Labour)

Response:

1. I believe that investing in our environment is investing in our future. As the Labour MP for South Derbyshire I will seek to defend and extend existing environmental protections.

Brexit is a threat to our wildlife legislation. Labour is committed to building a close new relationship with the EU to protect environmental standards. The Conservatives’ threatened 'bonfire of red tape’ is a threat to our environmental protections and to the quality of our lives. Their record on combating climate change and environmental damage has been one of inaction and broken promises. Labour will drop the Conservatives’ Great Repeal Bill, replacing it with an EU Rights and Protections Bill that will ensure there is no detrimental change to environmental protections as a result of Brexit.

An Environmental Act is a welcome and necessary initiative, helping to reverse the decline of wildlife, and I am happy to support it and work with the Derbyshire Wildlife Trust towards this aim.

2. Our oceans are used as dumping grounds. Labour will safeguard habitats and species in the ‘blue belts’ of the seas and oceans surrounding our island.

I believe that our stewardship of the environment needs to be founded on sound principles and based on scientific assessments. Labour will establish a science innovation fund, working with fisheries and other groups, helping to identify and protect more marine protected areas in UK seas and to develop and implement sustainable fisheries policies.

3. I am in favour of payments to farmers for positive environmental action. Wildlife should be allowed to thrive alongside our food production. Labour will work with farmers and foresters to plant a million trees of native species to promote biodiversity and better flood management. Unlike the Conservatives who attempted to privatise our forests, Labour will keep them in public hands.

Labour will champion sustainable farming, allowing wildlife to thrive alongside food production, by investing in and promoting skills, technology, market access and innovation. Only a Labour government will prioritise a sustainable, long-term future for our farming, fishing and food industries, fund robust flood resilience, invest in rural and coastal communities, and guarantee the protection and advancement of environmental quality standards.
 

Heather Wheeler (Conservative)