The Labour Party’ MP Lucy Powell (Manchester Central) has repeatedly declined to say whether she has completed the much-vaunted “carbon literacy” training that various people in Manchester seem to think is worth a bucket of warm spit.
On 26 June the editor of MCFly (who lives in Manchester Central constituency, i.e. has the pleasure of Ms Powell as his MP) wrote to her as follows
Dear Ms Powell
I note with despair but not surprise that you voted to expand Heathrow.
I have questions for you about your “carbon literacy” status –a) Have you completed the ‘carbon literacy’ training, developed by Manchester’s “Cooler Projects”,
and supported by Manchester City Council? If so, when did you do this?
b) If not, do you intend to do it?
c) If you do not intend to do it, why not.Thanks very much.
Dear Ms Powellnine days ago I sent you this<snip>Nine days ago I got an automated reply
Thanks for what looks suspiciously like the standard letter sent out to everyone who contacted you about your Heathrow decision.
I will repeat (now for the third time) some very very straightforward questions. I do look forward to your reply.
Thank you for the email about the vote on whether to approve the additional Terminal at Heathrow- this is a difficult subject and one which people have strongly held views on.
After much thought, I reached the conclusion that Heathrow expansion was the right thing for the country. It will see additional jobs created and will improve connectivity with the rest of the world. The expansion was strongly backed by Unions who want to see their member’s jobs protected and new jobs created
Heathrow, as the UK’s major hub airport, has been in need of additional capacity for some time and successive Governments have put off making a decision about its future.
Heathrow wrote to all MPs to say that they are confident that their plans meet what has been asked of them in terms of air quality, noise, carbon emissions and ensuring the whole of the UK benefits. One thing they were keen to highlight is a triple-lock of measures to ensure the project does not delay the UK’s compliance with legal limits for air quality; plans to further reduce Heathrow’s noise impacts; and using supply chain opportunities to benefit small businesses in the regions. They also have a sustainability strategy which sets out their aspiration for carbon neutral growth. These conditions will be set out as a legal requirement and should they not be met, the expansion won’t go ahead.
Obviously I recognise the tension between expansion and our commitments to reduce our impact on climate change and it is right that this is continuously scrutinised.
As a Manchester MP, one of my concerns is about the benefits to the UK as a whole. Whilst I recognise that there will be supply chain benefits across the country, I think that the Government need to do much more to address our infrastructure deficiency in the North. Connectivity improvements across the North are vital for our future and I coordinated a letter on behalf of GM MPs to ask for assurances that the North would receive the investment it needs. I have attached a copy of this letter for your information.
Infrastructure investment does not start and end at Heathrow expansion and whilst we may disagree on this issue- I hope we will agree on calling for the North to receive its fair share of investment.