10/06/2012 Sunday Politics South West


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In the South West, the wind farm opponents hoping for less public


money for turbines. And bad news for Nick Clegg as the


Apology for the loss of subtitles for 1711 seconds


Hello and welcome to the Sunday politics in the South West. Coming


up in the next 20 minutes. It has been blowing a elite this


week, and it is blowing in the wind that Tobin subsidies could be


slashed. -- blowing a relief. -- power by no subsidies. Here with me


now, is Karl Wallace, and still firmly in the Yellow Coroner, Tory


MP Adrian Sanders. -- the yellow corner. Let's begin with family


matters. Research published last week suggested one in five Liberal-


Democrat members have left the party in the past year. Why are


people will drink with their feet? people will drink with their feet?


Basically because of the leadership. We're seeing Nick Clegg at the


moment making some very poor moment making some very poor


decisions. Students tuition fees, for one, not supporting the NHS is


another. I have people coming up to me and saying, we will not support


the Liberal Democrats and the again. As a father of five as well as


being a nurse, I felt I had to do something, and the best way for me


was too much with my feet. It rain, it is fair to say you take issue


with the leadership on all kinds of policy issues. Why do you think it


is still better to stay inside the party fighting what some may say it


would be a hopeless cause? You do not change it by leaving the room.


Decisions are made by those who turn up. The drop in membership is


nothing unusual for a party, six years ago there was a study that


showed the Labour party was losing one member of every 20 minutes. If


that had continued, Carl would be the only member of the party. --


Karl Wallace. He we looked at the specific figures. In the south-east,


apparently membership is down 60% since 2009. That is really bad news,


isn't it? I think it is more likely to happen in a seat we knew there


is a member of Parliament. But, things will pick up, in my own


constituency we saw a drop in membership and the fresh deer, but


at the end of this year we may be in surplus, which is remarkable. --


in the first year. What we have to get across is the reason why we are


in the coalition, which I think most people understand when they


look at the rest of Europe, and do things we have brought for our area.


The discount on broadband charges, a bypass we have been waiting 50


years for. By Clegg was in Cornwall a few weeks ago and this is what he


had to say. There are some people who like their politics completely


pure and tribal and prefer to have called -- politicians in opposing


corners. I have never been like that. I have always believed in


pluralism, in reaching across party lines to do the right thing for the


country are a whole. The three essentially saying to people like


you, I am comfortable in this centre-rate relationship. People


like you are wrong, you are dinosaurs, you are tribal. That is


what he is trying to save. Unfortunately, the Liberals are now


seen as small Conservatives -- as Conservatives with a small sea. --


c. Labour are getting more members. Who was at that started the


privatisation of the health service? It was Labour. Who


introduced tuition fees? It was Labour. Labour is as right wing as


anything this Government has been doing. I am sure that Labour has


made errors in the past, but you're getting a new generation coming


through who are supporting Labour. I endure part of that new


generation of politicians, Karl. Now, onto wind. You may remember


David Cameron's catchy vote blue, go green slogans. It was all part


of a mission to modernise the Tories. But how green are at his


credentials in Government? -- how green are his credentials in


Government? He has already strangling their growing solar


industry, and now at the same could be said for the wind farm industry.


This South West is said to be one of the windiest places in Europe,


no wonder Cornwall was host to the UK's Commercial went to a bang. But


wind farms have always been controversial. - my first


commercial wind tubing. That he is part of a new group set


up to fight the growth of wind turbines in Cornwall. At the moment


in Cornwall alone, he says more than 400 applications are being


considered, and there is no wonder when you do the maths. The script


says that for a moderate to a bank the feeding tariff rate is 18.8


pence per kilowatt hour. Plus another 3p if it is exported to the


National Grid. That depends on how much wind there is, but on an


average level, disturbing that would make just over �207,000 per


year. -- this car buying. Taking into a new -- account annual cost


and a minimum life of 20 years, the estimated total profit is a


whopping �3 million. Now those figures could be faults -- slashed


by 25%. We think that is good. Firstly, it will raise awareness


for the public of the sort of profits being made. There are


hundreds of thousands of pounds to be made each year. Yet, the actual


impact of them on Co2 emissions, we would argue, is extremely small.


but those in the renewable energy industry are seeing a 25% cut could


be disastrous. A would be stunned, quite frankly. It is difficult to


believe the Government would be prepared to make such a serious


mistake on impacting the viability of onshore wind farms and the


damaging consequences that would have for the UK. Ofgem says


renewable energy puts the average household energy Bill up by �100


per year. Not popular with punters, and politicians are not happy,


either. In February, five of the region's MPs added their names to a


letter calling on the Government to make a dramatic cut to the


subsidies given to onshore wind. But is this a crowd pleaser? One


enthusiast backs a senior Conservative idea of bigger


community bribes. I don't think that is the right word, but I think


more benefits need to go to communities to build this --


political support that keeps tariffs in place. That is why in


organisations such as community for renewables, the idea of recycling


profits back into communities is more important. The emphasis needs


to move towards that. Consultation has already taken place between the


Government and when farm companies on cuts to subsidies, but that was


for 10%, something the industry says it could cope with. 25% is


different, and if that happens they will be hoping for another of the


Chancellor's recent U-turns. We're joined now from Exeter by the


Conservative MP for Tiverton and Homerton. He is one of the MPs who


would like to seek subsidies slashed. Neil Parish, if you get


your wish it is another kick for this claim this is the greenest


Government ever? I don't think so, there is only so much money to


spend on green energy, and is it right to subsidise onshore wind


farms with so much money? In the end, the consumer has to pay for it.


We have Hydro-Electric schemes and others, and we can look again at


some of the solar power, because the price of panels has come down


now, they are more effective. It is making sure we deliver green energy


but at a cost that is affordable. Wind farms do not deliver power all


the time. He were not one of the MPs who are rumoured to have --


rumoured to exist or that all this vote blue, go green business is a


lot of non-Conservative nonsense, basically?


I think that green energy is essential, because I also believe


you have to have a nuclear power, as well. I believe and a whole


basket of energy, and I think that wind turbines on land are being


over subsidised and the poorer consumers will still have to pay


the bills. I think we have to be very careful how we spend


consumers' money. A Adrian, this is one of these issues that is a


litmus test of the coalition. The Liberal Democrats are very keen on


wind power, and the Conservatives are trying to stitch them up.


have a programme for Government which makes it clear we want to be


the greenest Government ever. You cannot do that unless you are


putting more resources into alternatives. Whether you focus at


all on wind or look at it geothermal, solar, tidal, all the


other possibilities, I will possibly be on the same side. What


I certainly don't want to see is more nuclear power. But think it is


either a nuclear or wind or the likes call-out. Labour is pretty


keen on wind, but a lot of people in Dorset cannot stand it. The us


is a very controversial area. In Dorset 85% of the land is a media


of an outstanding natural beauty. - - is an area of outstanding natural


beauty. There are proposed wind farms going forward between


Portland and the Isle of Wight, which may be between 203 hundred


wind turbines. If these proposed subsidies are cut, the company who


are looking at this may pull out or may reduce their project. That


would be catastrophic for some people in the industry. Absolutely.


The Government are missing a trick here, though. They should be


encouraging county councils and working as a co-operative to form


this. When farm companies were really 51 -- were really councils


that came together, so all that money is going to them.


umbrella body that represents wave power and wind power says that, to


meet the target we need to meet by 2020, onshore wind will not do it.


Bader and thinks all, the Bristol Channel has the second-highest rise


and fall in the world, we can use the tidal power there. We will have


to be new -- to be using more renewables. We will need a mix of


energies, and we will keep them running without having too much


wind power. From wind to the topic of old bags. We are probably all


aware of the damage discarded plastic bags can do to the


environment, and we are all used to being asked if we want or need one


would do when we go to the supermarket. -- want or need one


when we go. Now the figure has of - - seems to be rising again, and


some are asking the Government to intervene to bring it down. Our


correspondent is visiting the town which tried to bang - but tried to


ban plastic bags a few years ago. By years ago, this town became


famous for banning plastic bags. A film by a local camera woman


highlighted the damage they can cause and encouraged traders to


back the campaign. After a decade on, they say it is still going


strong. When we started, I was probably issuing 200 plastic bags


and probably 300 plastic counter bags every day. Now I am probably


selling - we charged 10p for the corn starch once, probably one or


two a most -- at most. Retailers were warned they would be


forced to introduce their own schemes to cut down on usage. Many


big retailers now charge for their plastic bags, but recently there


has been a 5% rise in the number of plastic bags taken from shops,


leading for calls from the Government -- for the Government to


do more. A does the Government recognise that the success of


taxation schemes in Northern Ireland, Ireland and Wales, which


have resulted in a 90% drop in plastic bags and raised revenue to


help deal with the environmental problems caused by these icons of a


throwaway society... But the Government says it is waiting to


see how well taxation schemes work elsewhere before looking at any


changes. There has been a voluntary scheme, as I am sure my noble


friend knows, in this country which has reduced the use of single-use


bags by some 45% across the UK. The first evidence of how the Welsh


scheme, which started on the 1st October last year, the first


evidence of that will come out imminently... The plastics industry


points to recent Government research when arguing against


taxation. A study has found that because of the amount of carbon


used in manufacturing and transporting cotton bags, one would


have to be used 131 times before it was a better option than a standard


plastic carrier. Any measure that people have to be


looking at is not trying to remove a product that has a low


environmental impact, but to lessen its environmental impact further by


eight further encouraging the re- use, recycling of bikes. Critic Sir


not convinced by the report. According bike is not likely to


kill anything. A plastic bag almost certainly will. -- a cotton bag. If


they had taken that into account, as well as the pure concept of


carbon Footprint, I think they will probably come to a markedly


different conclusion. Next month, the latest official figures on


plastic bag used will be published. If it emerges more people are


failing to use them, the Government could face further pressure to


intervene. Adrian, should the Government be


more proactive in this? 6.3 billion bags are used in this


country and they have a lifespan of 1,000 years. There are difficult to


get you read of, and anything that can be done to get rid of our use


of plastic bags... Government intervention?


Bid does require Government support. Where there have been successful


supermarket trials encouraging people to be used plastic bags, the


Government has to do a bit more to get them to do that more regularly.


Baggage usage goes down when the supermarkets have a campaign, but


the creep back up again. Karl, it is the case that a lot of


supermarkets ask you whether you want one or not. If you walk out --


if you say yes, you walk out with six carrier bags. A absolutely. I


agree with the principle Adrian has been speaking about, and it is


phenomenal when you think about how many a bags are out there. The


reception coming back about Wales is that it has dropped by 86% by


implementing that charge. That has to be a good thing, and also when


we charged 5p per bag on the 6.4 million plastic bags out there, --


if we charged, it would raise millions of pounds. That money


could be used for appropriate environment will usage. It has to


be a good thing. The clock is ticking, but we have to make time


for our regular round-up of the Rain was not the only thing to


dampen their Jubilee celebrations. Volunteer stewards from Plymouth on


a Government work-experience scheme were forced to sleep rough under


London Bridge. We got underneath London Bridge and got told we were


staying there for the night. It was horrendous. I can't believe they


did it to us, really. It was horrible. Devon and Cornwall police


say they will not delete DNA profiles of innocent people until


the Government tells them to. The controversy over Cornwall's


incinerator continues. There is anger that the taxpayer is now


fitting the Bill for the developer's legal fees.


The new Enterprise Plan for Newquay airport and is closer after �5


billion is invested. Tens of 1,000 pounds -- tens of


thousands of pounds of military equipment has been stolen from MoD


bases. Be a need to crack down on this and


say to people, if you call round stealing stuff, you are going to be


Karl, this business of the Government Stuart -- stewards on a


Government work-experience scheme, it is pretty poor stuff, isn't it?


It is basic exploitation. We have de regularisation of some of the


poorest workers in the South West, who are working for nothing. This


organisation has a duty of care, and under its remit the Government


has a duty of care to look after these people. I would say, Lord


Prescott, push it and let's have an inquiry on this. John Prescott was


making the point that this company will be providing the same service


during the Olympics. He was saying does this kind of thing question


their suitability to do that again? Per haps it does, but it is not in


the Government's interest for this scheme to fail. It is offering


people, when it works properly, good experience, new skills,


helping to -- helping them to get back into the labour market. The


Government has to firm up on this and make sure people are working


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