Ken Claims Boris Opposed Kyoto

29 March 2008

Mr Livingstone made clear he views 1 May as a referendum on his policies to tackle climate change and protect the health of Londoners.

Aides claimed it would be the first election in British history to be decided largely on environmental issues.


The Mayor put his plans for a £25 congestion charge on gas guzzlers at the heart of his re-election bid and claimed that neither Boris Johnson nor Brian Paddick were in tune with voters' passion for urgent action on global warming.


Mr Livingstone made a direct pitch to Liberal Democrat voters by declaring that Mr Paddick had detached himself from his own party on green issues by opposing the "CO2 charge" and the Low Emissions Zone, which fines polluting lorries.

Launching his manifesto in the Lib-Dem heartland of Richmond, the Mayor praised the local council for slapping higher parking charges on 4x4s and pleaded with the party's supporters to help him "stop Boris" from winning.


He described his Tory rival as "one of the least environmentally friendly politicians in the country", claiming that he had opposed the Kyoto treaty as well as the £25 C-charge. Mr Livingstone also said Mr Johnson had ruined his procycling image with his pledge to allow motorbikes to use bus lanes.


Among the main policies unveiled today were a £500 million package to expand cycle routes and introduce cheap cycle hire as well as anti-flooding plans to ban householders from replacing front gardens with car driveways.

Mr Livingstone wants to turn Victoria Embankment into a sandy beach for the whole of August every year from 2010 and make all residential streets 20mph zones, with speed cameras replacing road humps.


Other measures include using heat from Barking Power Station to warm 50,000 homes and expanding car clubs.

Mr Livingstone said he would be running on his record - including the fact that London 's congestion charge is now being copied across the globe - as well as on his future plans for a "cleaner, greener capital for the 21st century".

He said there was a clear dividing line between him and his opponents over the plan for a £25 charge on gas guzzlers planned from October.


The Mayor highlighted a recent poll showing that 61 per cent of Londoners backed his plans, while just 29 per cent were against. He pointed out that Green Party candidate Sian Berry last week urged Londoners to vote "Green 1, Ken 2" to use their second preferences to back Mr Livingstone.

"The outcome of this election will determine whether ground-breaking policies to build on London 's commitment to the Kyoto agreement on climate change will proceed or not," he said. "Boris Johnson ... is one of the few politicians in the world, and the only major candidate for Mayor, to support George Bush in opposing the Kyoto agreement. Boris Johnson's attempt to paint himself green for the purposes of being elected is entirely fake - on the environment Boris Johnson is a throwback to another age."









From October, "gas-guzzling" 4x4s, people carriers and sports cars face a £25 C-charge to drive into central London , more than three times the current £8 Smaller cars will pay nothing for first time. £4 million will be spent expanding car clubs to allow half of Londoners to be within five minutes' walk of a pay-as-you go car.



£500 million package to create new commuter routes into the City and in the suburbs. Motorcyclists will continue to be banned from bus lanes used by cyclists. Within the Circle line zone, bikes will be rented from on-street sites.




From 2010, the Victoria Embankment will be closed throughout August and turned into " London Beach " The Paris "plage" attracts four million visitors a year and Mr Livingstone says there will be a similar boost to London tourism. Olympic site will be turned into London 's biggest new park in 200 years.




Plans to move 25 per cent of London 's energy supply away from the national grid to local generation. The capital's only power station, in Barking, will use its excess heat to warm 50,000 homes. As 70 per cent of capital's CO2 comes from buildings, Mr Livingstone would streamline rules to let the NHS, schools and firms "retrofit" insulation and other measures. Green advice to save each London household upto £300 in fuel bills.




Opposes all new airport expansion and may fund legal challenge to Heathrow third runway. Low Emission Zone, fining high-polluting lorries in Greater London, to be extended to lighter vehicles from this summer and vans/ minibuses from 2010. 500 new electricity petrol hybrid buses by 2010. One million trees to be planted by 2012. "Green Oyster Card" to reward those who travel off-peak or cycle once a week and give discounts on entry to nature reserves

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