Politics

Ed Miliband eviscerating Grant Shapps and 'Tory dinosaurs' is a very satisfying watch

Ed Miliband calls Tory MPs ‘dinosaurs’ over onshore wind farm stance

Ed Miliband has accused the Tories of being "dinosaurs" over their stance on onshore wind.

Speaking in the commons, the former Labour leader skewered the party over their flip-flopping on the issue and said those opposed to it had been "indulged".

He said: "Alongside nuclear we need a sprint for cheap clean homegrown renewables."

He said the government had overseen "chaos, confusion and embarrassment" when it came to onshore wind" and claimed that by banning it in 2015, the government had increased energy bills for families by £150 each.

"Opposing onshore wind waves the white flag on our energy security and raises bills for families.

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“And the only reason we’re debating this issue is not because the public don’t support it, they do by 78 per cent according to his department’s own polling.

“It’s because dinosaurs on the benches opposite oppose clean energy. And David Cameron and every leader since has indulged them.

“And the problem is that the secretary of state who prides himself on being a truly modern man is part of a fossilised tendency.”

Miliband accused business secretary Grant Shapps of being “part of the lobbying effort against lifting the ban” on onshore wind in April year.

“He said they were an eyesore, he said they created problems of noise and he urged the then prime minister to largely reject onshore wind,” the former Labour leader said.

Ending the ban, he said, would be in "the national interest".

During his summer leadership campaign, Sunak pledged to "scrap plans to relax the ban on onshore wind”.

But now it looks like there could be another Tory u-turn as Sunak has said he wants to hear from more sides before making a decision.

Responding to Miliband, Shapps said that the government position had not changed, and that onshore wind developments could take place so long as local communities supported them.

He said: “The energy white paper, the net-zero strategy, they have all said exactly the same thing, as we’ve been saying this week, onshore can happen where it has local consent."

“I don’t know why this local consent principle is so difficult for the right honourable gentleman opposite to understand.”It is a simple and fundamental principle that the government derives its democratic legitimacy from the people. The future of the country must not be decided by plotting and U-turns at Westminster; it must be decided by the people in a general election. And for this reason The Independent is calling for an election to be held. Have your say and sign our election petition by clicking here.

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