LIFE believes that a resilient society is a sustainable society, and that the future is to de-centralise government and empower communities to build their own capacity and self-reliance.
The transition to sustainability will result from millions of micro-decisions taken by millions of people every day. The role of government is to set the stage to allow those decisions to be taken, and for the results to be beneficial.
LIFE is 100% committed to getting the UK economy and society to a socially and environmentally sustainable position. There is substantial evidence that dealing with our social problems is key to greater sustainability.
We know energy efficiency is the going to be the greatest contributor to reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, and our WellFair policies are the most effective means of improving efficiency of our transport and housing.
We are convinced that we can improve the quality of our food and our countryside by adopting modern, non-GM agriculture. As a densely populated island we must protect our landscape and our marinescape, so that they can regain the biodiversity that we know makes them sustainable.
The primary LIFE policies that will get us onto a sustainable footing are:
- increased transport efficiency, through the provision of free, local, mass transit
- increased efficiency in our housing stock by renovating existing buildings and adding new efficient public housing
- reduced use of the most polluting fuels through the collection of carbon/GHG taxes
- increased production of quality food harvested using sustainable agriculture, and the proper pricing of fuels and fertilisers
- investment in renewable energy generation, to double electricity production by 2030
- investment in a national ‘smart grid’ and community microgrids, so that our energy supply is protected and multiple generators can be integrated
Efficiency driven by WellFair services
The most significant environmental policies are our WellFair policies, They affect the efficiency of our housing and transport, by upgrading our housing stock and promoting the use of mass transit.
We will encourage local food production and sustainable agricultural practices by providing funding (£26Bn/year) for local Communities to provide food and sustenance for all of their residents.
Carbon taxes and effective price signalling
Waste control at the local level
Thirdly, we will enable local Communities to levy waste taxes at a local level, which will encourage greater efficiency and reduced waste.
LIFE will resist the introduction of GMOs, as we believe that we can achieve better results, without the potential health risks, by using modern hybrid breeding.
LIFE will seek to end the UK’s participation in the EU CAP as soon as practical, because we believe that by prolonging an “industrial agricultural” mindset, we are missing the opportunity to make our countryside a more useful resource. Our countryside and our marine resources will fare much better, and provide rich resources for our successors, if we recognise that biodiversity is essential to the long-term sustainability of the lands and the seas that support us.
Moving to renewable, sustainable, distributed power generation
Every department in every government will have energy sustainability targets starting in the second year of our first parliament. These targets will cover increasing self-sufficiency and renewable capacity.
This will be complimented by a national energy infrastructure program to build the “smart grid” that will link renewable energy sources from around the country, and allow us to become carbon neutral after 15 years, and move off fossil fuels within 25 years.
Community ownership of renewable energy generation, that allows the savings and benefits to accrue to the local people, is the way forward. The NI Bank will provide funding for Community renewable generation projects that will help Communities reach their carbon neutrality targets.
LIFE will drive sustainability through the proper understanding and implementation of sustainable economics, summarised in this diagram (click it for more detail on how to build a sustainable economy):