Commenting on chancellor George Osborne’s Autumn Statement today (Tuesday 29 November 2011), Friends of the Earth’s executive director Andy Atkins said:“George Osborne’s Autumn Statement will send a wintery blast through the UK’s future economic prospects.
“Throwing billions of pounds at roads and dirty energy will increase our dependency on gas, coal and oil and lock cash-strapped homes and businesses into spiralling fuel bills.
“Just a fraction of the money earmarked for new roads would throw a crucial lifeline to the solar industry – and the 30,000 jobs currently under threat from government cuts.
“It’s astounding that the chancellor has rewarded lobbying by some of the world’s biggest businesses with a £250 million licence to pollute – and using funds culled from benefits rubs salt into the wound.
“The Green Investment Bank could drive a real economic recovery, but by refusing to let it off the leash the chancellor’s missed a golden opportunity to build a safe, clean economy from the rubble of the old.”