HAVE you heard of UK100? You really should, because it is the most strident programme yet to impose the deliberately destructive ‘green’ agenda on our lives. Make no mistake: UK100’s aim is to drive us off the roads.
UK100 describes itself as a network of local leaders pursuing rapid transition to Net Zero. As a Together Foundation report showed, more than 100 councils have joined the scheme, usually without consulting their voters. Led by Polly Billington, former special adviser to the Department of Energy & Climate Change, the anti-motorist UK100 is well-funded by alleged philanthropists. For the many councils going bust, the grants offered by UK100 are welcome.
Gillian Dymond wrote an open letter in TCW this month to the mayor of North Tyneside, urging her not to act beyond her role and responsibility in taking such an extreme route to decarbonisation. Anyway, how could a small area of Geordieland make any noticeable difference to atmospheric gases? Dame Norma Redfearn’s reply was plain UK100 marketing blurb: ‘The council joined UK100 to share best practice with other members and to work together on our respective carbon Net Zero ambitions. We will continue to lead the UK’s response to climate change, acting sooner than the government’s goal by making substantial progress within the next decade to deliver Net Zero.’
A stark illustration of the threat of faux green extremism is provided by Birmingham. The UK100 website boasts that the clean air zone there is ‘addressing health inequalities reinforced by poor air quality’. Such pollution disproportionately harms the young, old and deprived, we are told, and as Birmingham is the ‘third-youngest city in Europe’, cars are cast as a deadly contaminant.
As reported by the Daily Express last week, the city council has been steadily removing parking spaces by around 2,500 per year since 2012. The cull is now accelerating, to ‘manage demand’ for cars. Multi-storey concrete carbuncles will be converted to housing. Smart City, here we come (that’s my perspective, not the controlled medium of the Express).
In a further Express report, the Birmingham authority is now proposing a ban on petrol and diesel cars in the centre. Streets will be redesigned to restrict access to vehicles other than public transport. The consultation document envisages a ‘more hospitable’ city for residents and tourists (!) and claims that the proposed redevelopment will ‘save lives’.
Yet as the petrol-head presenter of Geoff Buys Cars (a YouTube channel) argues, after a spate of stabbings on buses the best way to preserve life in Birmingham would be to let the traffic flow. Instead of blaming cars for what councillors describe as an ugly and unappealing environment, perhaps the problem is the people? As Geoff observes, ‘there are lots of other factors that I’m not going into, but are really stinking obvious if you drive through Birmingham’. But the city will do its bit for UK100, and commit socio-economic suicide.
My district council, Rother in East Sussex, recently made the UK100 pledge without asking residents. This subverts democracy: we are consulted on parking charges, public toilets and dogs in parks, but not on this radical plan to curb citizens’ quality of life (not that consultation on those matters meant much: the respective outcomes being increased, closed and imminently banned). The climate strategy for Rother asserts: ‘The need to travel will be reduced, those that do will be on foot, bikes, public transport or in a low / zero carbon vehicle.’
Leader of the council Doug Oliver used his column in the Bexhill & Battle Observer last week to promote the council’s ‘strategy for tackling climate change’. Preposterously, he claimed that our area has been hit by extreme weather this winter, despite it being mostly mild and settled throughout, but don’t let facts get in the way of ecological doom. Oliver then used exactly the same wording as Dame Norma in Tyneside to extol the virtues of UK100.
Truly, our politicians have abandoned us, and we will all pay the price of their treachery. With our local representatives’ help, UK100 is stealing from the poor to give to the rich.