Environment Bill

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Excerpts
Wednesday 15th September 2021

(2 years, 8 months ago)

Lords Chamber
Read Full debate Read Hansard Text Read Debate Ministerial Extracts
Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Portrait The Minister of State, Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park) (Con)
- Hansard - -

I thank noble Lords for their contributions during this debate, and I also offer my thanks, in addition to those already given by the Secretary of State, to Henry Dimbleby and his team for their comprehensive review of our food system. I also thank the noble Baroness, Lady Boycott, not just for tabling this amendment but for her erudite and thoughtful speech, the contents of which I very much agreed with. Although the amendment here largely relates to domestic policy, all of the arguments that she raises are driving the policies and campaigns in the run-up to COP 26.

In the last debate I mentioned breaking the link between commodity production and deforestation. Even more important, perhaps, is the campaign to try to build an alliance of countries committed to identifying and then shifting those subsidies that often drive destruction. It is an extraordinary thing that the top 50 food-producing countries spend $700 billion a year subsidising often the very destruction that we are debating here today. That is four times the world’s aid agency budgets combined. It is also the same amount that scientists believe we will need to spend if we are going to get out of the hole that we are in from a biodiversity point of view. That is a really important campaign and one that I very much hope we will see some success with.

The Government have committed to carefully considering the review that Henry Dimbleby put together and responding in full with the government food strategy White Paper. This will cover the entire food system, from farm to fork. That White Paper is an opportunity to achieve our net-zero, nature recovery and biodiversity commitments, building on work already under way in the Environment Bill, as well as docking into wider government priorities, including net zero and the 25-year environment plan.

This is one of the Government’s top priorities, as we have said. Defra is working with the relevant departments across the whole of government to explore options to reduce carbon emissions from food production, to incentivise land-use change, to sequester more carbon and to restore nature at the same time, as well as preserving natural systems and natural resources. The White Paper that we produce will consider the food system in its entirety, as I said, along with its impact on the natural environment, the nation’s health and our exceptional British food producers. I echo the remarks of my noble friend Lord Caithness in his tribute to our farmers.

The White Paper will be published shortly after the passing of the Bill. I cannot provide an exact date, I am afraid, but it will be imminent—assuming that the Bill gets Royal Assent, which we all very much hope it does. It will also reflect and build upon the work of the Bill to address the impact of agriculture and food production on greenhouse gas emissions and biodiversity.

We are committed to listening to opinions from stakeholders across the entirety of the food system. We are actively engaging with internal and external stakeholders on the development of the White Paper, and we will factor the helpful views of your Lordships’ House from this and previous debates during the passage of the Bill into the White Paper, and we will continue to engage following its publication. So while the noble Baroness, Lady Boycott, is right to seek assurances as to its progress, I hope she agrees that there is no real need for the amendment.

Baroness Boycott Portrait Baroness Boycott (CB)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I thank the Minister and all noble Lords who have spoken in support of the amendment. Many interesting points have been made. I definitely agree with the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett, about ultra-processed food. In fact, I was chairing something this morning where someone put up a slide pointing out that if you spend £1 in a British supermarket at the moment, you can get three peppers, six apples or a very large packet of biscuits. Obviously, if you have really hungry children at home who are craving food, you are going to end up with the biscuits. There is huge distortion within our food system, which is why the response has to be systemic change.

It was really good to hear from the noble Earl, Lord Caithness. I am sorry that I forgot Back British Farming Day—many noble Lords here today are wearing ears of corn—but I know that farmers want to get this right. It is important that we must never separate nature from farming; they go hand in glove with each other. The noble Baroness, Lady Parminter, echoed the same point, as did the noble Baroness, Lady Hayman, in her excellent speech, from which I learned a lot. She is absolutely right to say that we must not open up the market to cheap food.

The noble Baroness, Lady McIntosh, said that farming wants to play a role. I absolutely believe that; I do not think any farmer wants to grow something that they do not think will end up providing nice, nutritious food. I was also glad to hear what she said about cheese. I come from the West Country. Last night, I had a lot of people to dinner, and I had seven different West Country cheeses, all of which were eaten by the dog just before everyone arrived. The dog was quite ill.

I thank the Minister very much for his response. I know he means everything he says. I am pleased that, in the run-up to COP 26, we are going to be looking at many of these issues and that, most importantly, the food strategy is going to be considered across government. This issue does not just belong to Defra, and that is the most important thing.

On the strength of what the Minister has said—and I think he understands the commitment of everyone in the House to trying to make this work—I am happy to beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

--- Later in debate ---
Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Portrait Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Con)
- Hansard - -

I will address Amendment 119, which was tabled by the noble Lord, Lord Lea of Crondall. I thank him for his time last week and also briefly earlier today. There is a lot of crossover in this debate between what we are discussing now and the debate led by the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett, in Committee, where we talked about GDP and its uses, weaknesses and shortcomings.

We agree that domestic accountability is important. As the noble Lord knows, the Climate Change Act 2008 already commits us to reaching net zero by 2050 and the forthcoming net-zero strategy will set out our plans for transitioning to a net-zero economy across all departments of government. We are considering the most appropriate way to monitor the delivery of the decarbonisation measures set out in the strategy. We are also encouraging private firms to disclose their climate impacts to investors and the public and to set out how they will achieve net zero by 2050 or before. It is at a much earlier stage, but we are doing what we can to accelerate moves by the private sector to identify, with a view to disclosing and then minimising, the risk to environmental harm generally, not just carbon.

Bringing other countries with us is obviously vital. In 2019, the Prime Minister committed to doubling our international climate finance to £11.6 billion until 2025. That will help developing countries to make the transition to low-carbon and climate-resilient development and more nature-positive economies.

The proposed statistic in the amendment can, I am told, already be computed using publicly available ONS data and OBR forecasts of economic activity, together with the data published in the Government’s greenhouse gas inventory. The noble Lord made the point very well that a simple relationship between economic growth and emissions is, in itself, insufficient to assess progress towards emissions targets and is not necessarily the best metric by which to compare every nation’s progress towards decarbonisation. Ultimately, we need to break the link between GDP and emissions, the use of scarce resources and extraction generally. To some extent the UK’s record in recent years demonstrates that that is possible, as the noble Lord, Lord Whitty, pointed out, but in a narrow sense relating purely to emissions. We have not yet demonstrated that in relation to use of natural resources and our wider impacts on the natural environment, but we must.

I assure noble Lords that we are carefully considering the links between economic growth and the environment. The independent Dasgupta review highlights how economic growth and activity has damaged nature and will continue to do so unless there is a substantial change, one that involves ensuring that we learn properly to value essential things such as natural systems—nature—and those things we depend on, and attach a cost to waste, pollution and plunder. The Government agree with the Dasgupta review’s central conclusion: nature and the biodiversity that underpins it is profoundly important to all of us and sustains our economies, livelihoods and well-being. We are actively supporting and developing tools to drive sustainability in the finance sector, including as part of our response to the Dasgupta review. Over the past three decades, we have driven down emissions by 44%, which is the fastest reduction of any G7 country—I am not sure that the noble Lord, Lord Whitty, provided the figure, but he was hinting at it. At the same time, we saw economic growth and set some of the most ambitious targets in the world for the future, while driving forward net zero globally through our COP 26 presidency and associated diplomacy. We have an enormous amount more to do. The noble Lord makes an important point: we need to be able to measure and understand. I hope he accepts that that work is under way and I ask him to withdraw his amendment.

Lord Lea of Crondall Portrait Lord Lea of Crondall (Non-Afl)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My Lords, I thank the Minister in particular for acknowledging the importance of understanding how we can set targets. It is very easy to accept the case for saying that GDP or some other measure should not be mentioned, but we live in a world where international agreements have to be made using consistent units. The OECD or the UN is not the place to argue that we can suddenly revisit the national income accounting methods created by John Maynard Keynes and others in Cambridge in, I think, 1944-45. There has to be some international agreement about how you measure the economy.

Some people say, “Let us measure the value of forests”, and I have very great sympathy with that, or the destruction of habitats and the elimination of species—the lion, the tiger and so on. We need a practical way to see how far—and this leads up to the Glasgow debate—there can be any agreed view around the world on how we break the link that we all know exists between economic growth and emissions, which are becoming a very dangerous trend in relation to extreme temperatures, to mention only one point.

In light what the Minister has said, there should be something more specific for people in the next few years. It has not been mentioned but it is important that the people of the country as a whole understand the answer to a widely stated nostrum that we cannot do anything about climate change or we will get poorer. We have to have a narrative, with the Government behind it, so that we can actually do something about it. Changing the coefficient is a technical way of saying it, but we must get to a position where the people of this country can ask, “How are we doing on this?” and the answer is that we are doing something here and now and helping it to become part of the standard world metric. However, I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

--- Later in debate ---
Lord Khan of Burnley Portrait Lord Khan of Burnley (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My Lords, I will speak briefly to the amendment in the name of the noble Baroness, Lady McIntosh of Pickering. This amendment discusses the control and limiting of any potential damage to the environment by the construction of wind farms.

The UK is a global leader in offshore wind, with that energy source powering millions of homes across the country. It is also an area that the Government have identified for growth, with the world’s largest wind farm under construction off the north-east coast. Wind farms form an important part of our energy mix. We have heard concerns voiced about their impacts on the environment, including the potential disruption to ecosystems. The noble Baroness, Lady McIntosh, mentioned an important point: that the construction of offshore wind farms has meant a loss of 25% of fisheries. I look forward to hearing the Minister’s response to that point as well.

However, one can only assume that the construction of offshore wind farms must have had an impact assessment, and that it must have been done with some diligence—obviously, before the big announcement made by the Prime Minister when he launched the UK’s huge wind farm venture initiative and compared the UK’s wind farms to Saudi Arabian oil. I hope that the Minister is able to explain the work being undertaken by the department and reassure the noble Baroness on the construction of offshore wind farms.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Portrait Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Con)
- Hansard - -

I thank noble Lords for their contributions to the debate. This is an extremely important issue and the noble Baroness, Lady McIntosh, is right to raise it. In delivering net zero, it is crucial that environmental protections are maintained. I can assure her that existing planning processes are designed to ensure thorough consideration of cumulative effects prior to consenting. The need to consider cumulative effects in planning and decision-making is already set out in planning policy, in particular in the energy national policy statement, the marine policy statement, the habitats regulations assessment process and the infrastructure planning regulations of 2017, which cover the environmental impact assessment.

The regulatory framework also includes independent scrutiny by statutory nature conservation bodies—for example, Natural England. These regulatory frameworks ensure comprehensive identification and assessment of all significant environmental impacts, including the cumulative effects of the project, whether these be to the marine or terrestrial environment.

We have also brought forward amendments to the biodiversity net gain provisions in the Bill, extending the policy to terrestrial nationally significant infrastructure projects. As the noble Baroness will know, we have included provisions within the amendments to extend net gain to the marine environment once we have established the appropriate approach.

The noble Baroness asked a number of specific questions. The first was again in relation to the tension between inshore fisheries and offshore wind farms. Defra is working closely with Natural England, Cefas and the Marine Management Organisation to try to better understand the tensions and then consider the appropriate solutions. We have recently commissioned work looking at opportunities for co-location and are considering examples of good practice, such as the work done in Grimsby that enables fisheries and offshore wind farm operators to work well together. This also pays dividends for the marine environment, reducing the cumulative impacts of both.

The noble Baroness mentioned the example of the US Administration, who are currently considering a compensation scheme for the fishing industry as a result of losses incurred from the expansion of offshore wind developments. In the UK, offshore wind farm developers already pay disruption compensation to fishers temporarily displaced from their grounds by offshore wind construction. Members of the Defra programmes on offshore wind-enabling actions and marine planning are meeting US Administration officials and BEIS on Monday 20 September to discuss approaches to managing the deployment of offshore wind to minimise disturbance to the marine environment and other sea users.

The noble Baroness is right that onshore pylons are unsightly and, no doubt, not environmentally friendly. Electricity from offshore wind farms is transmitted to land, as she knows, via subsea cables. The offshore transmission network review, which was led by BEIS and Ofgem, is working to increase the co-ordination of offshore transmission to reduce the overall amount of new onshore infrastructure needed to meet the Government’s offshore wind targets.

Finally, the noble Baroness asked about decommissioning. Decommissioning is considered in the consenting process for offshore wind. In addition, Defra is discussing future options for decommissioning with developers who have programmes currently going through the consenting process. Some arrays may be repowered; however, other legacy infrastructure has been colonised and now provides important biodiversity benefits. We are working with the industry to understand how decommissioning can be delivered to maximise the gains while removing any unnecessary and avoidable pressures from the marine environment.

I hope that answers the questions that the noble Baroness asked and she feels sufficiently reassured to withdraw her amendment.

Baroness McIntosh of Pickering Portrait Baroness McIntosh of Pickering (Con)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I am grateful to the noble Lord, Lord Khan, for his remarks, and I am especially grateful to my noble friend the Minister for his reassurance on these points. He certainly put my mind at rest on many of them. I am not sure that the idea of colonising wind turbines on wind farms sounds very appealing, but he has satisfied me. It is helpful to know of the meeting on 20 September. I would be grateful if my noble friend could update us in that regard. At this stage, I beg leave to withdraw my amendment.

--- Later in debate ---
Baroness Hayman of Ullock Portrait Baroness Hayman of Ullock (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My Lords, I thank the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett of Manor Castle, for tabling this amendment and for her very comprehensive introduction. We had an interesting discussion on ecocide in Committee following the amendment then tabled by the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett, and we have done so again today. As the noble Baroness and others have clearly laid out the arguments on this issue, I do not intend to give a lengthy speech; the hour is late.

In her amendment today, the noble Baroness asks the Government to set an objective

“to support the negotiation of an amendment to the Statute of the International Criminal Court … to establish a crime of ecocide.”

In Committee, the Minister said that he strongly agreed “with the premise” of the noble Baroness’s argument. My noble friend Lady Whitaker has noted that he did not seem to really have any strong objections to the proposals. This was then caveated when the Minister said that pursuing this course of action

“would require an enormous amount of heavy lifting diplomatically, with little prospect at this stage of succeeding.”—[Official Report, 14/7/21; col. 1905.]

The noble and learned Lord, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd, stressed the importance of leadership in this aspect, and I hope that the Minister would agree with him and, as he says, push it a little further. My noble friend Lord Khan, in his response in Committee, called for a “constructive role” for the UK in negotiation and this would be a positive first step.

As the noble Baroness explained in the introduction to her amendment, unlike her amendment in Committee, she is calling for the Government to promote discussion of this. This seems to me to be a thoroughly reasonable request and so, with COP 26 on the horizon and the opportunity it presents the UK for global leadership on the climate and ecological crisis, I ask the Minister—who we know understands the reality of ecocide—to end this debate on a positive note and give the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett, some hope in this matter.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Portrait Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Con)
- Hansard - -

I thank the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett of Manor Castle, and Stop Ecocide International for agreeing to a meeting following Committee stage of the Bill. I found the debate we had in Committee and the subsequent engagement hugely insightful. As the noble Baroness knows and as I have made clear in my contribution during that debate, I very strongly agree with the premise of her argument.

As she knows, ecocide is not a crime recognised under international law and there is currently no consensus on a legal definition. Before the ICC and the crimes it has jurisdiction over could be established by the Rome statute adopted in 1998, ecocide had to be removed in the drafting stages because of the lack of agreement among states parties to the court. The Rome statute provides some protections to the natural environment in armed conflict. It designates international attacks that knowingly and excessively cause widespread, long term, and severe damage to the natural environment as a war crime. But ecocide in the broader sense, in the manner in which the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett, described it, as an internationally punishable crime, has not yet been recognised by the United Nations.

The UK’s current priority regarding the International Criminal Court, as I said in Committee, is to reform it so that it functions better and can deliver successful prosecutions of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. I know noble Lords on all sides of the House share that ambition. As I understand it, if an amendment to the statute was adopted, it would only bind states parties which have ratified it. If not ratified, the court has no jurisdiction over those states. It is likely, and certainly possible, therefore, that the biggest culprits in relation to ecocide and egregious environmental damage would be exempt.

However, reform of the court is a long and complicated process. The independent expert review of the court made over 300 recommendations to improve the workings of the court, some of them fundamental. It will take time to implement these recommendations and that is a priority not just for the UK but many other states parties to the Rome statute. A significant amendment such as that proposed is currently unlikely to achieve the support of two-thirds of the states parties necessary to amend the Rome statute to make ecocide an international crime. As I said in Committee, pursuing it would require enormous heavy lifting on our part, with—at this stage—little prospect of success. There is a concern it could detract from the goal of improving the court’s effectiveness, which in any case would be a prerequisite for a meaningful application of ecocide.

Although I am afraid that I cannot commit here and now to promoting this campaign or concept internationally, I very much share the noble Baroness’s interest in this area, as she knows. I cannot take action as part of this Environment Bill but I am keen to continue discussions with the noble Baroness on how she and others believe the UK, through these international channels, can better lead in recognising and tackling egregious environmental crimes. In the meantime, I very much hope she will feel able to withdraw her amendment.

Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle Portrait Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle (GP)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My Lords, I thank all noble Lords who have taken part in this debate and I thank the Minister for his response. It is probably rare that we have seen such quality and intensity of debate on an amendment at this time of the evening, and I sincerely thank everyone who has contributed to that. I particularly thank the noble Baronesses, Lady Boycott and Lady Whitaker, who have been my stalwart supporters throughout this debate. It was wonderful to hear from the noble Baroness, Lady Whitaker, about her long family connection to this campaign.

That ties in with the points made by the noble Lord, Lord Thomas of Gresford, who outlined the long-term history of the development of this concept. I am not going fully to engage in the legal issues and the questions that he raised, given the hour, but I will point out that the definition of ecocide in subsection (3) of the amendment was developed after a long process involving a distinguished panel of jurists, of whom Philippe Sands—a name well-known to many Members of your Lordships’ House—was co-chair. The interesting approach of holding states responsible is something I will certainly look into further.

I thank the noble and learned Lord, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd, who also engaged on this issue in Committee. The point that he made—that reform of procedure can go hand in hand with legal reform—very much answers one of the points made by the Minister. The noble and learned Lord pointed out that there is significant momentum in continental Europe. I would also point out that there is significant momentum within the UK, in Scotland. Indeed, a briefing was held there in the last few days with wide parliamentary engagement, so I come back to the point about this Parliament really needing to catch up.

The point made by the noble Baroness, Lady Hayman, was significant. The Minister, in Committee and again tonight, repeated the suggestion that this would involve enormous heavy lifting and would require lots of resources from the UK Government in order to make progress. The amendment does not ask the Government to pursue a drive for the creation of the crime; it asks them to promote a continuation of the discussion. I do not believe the phrase “enormous heavy lifting” is an appropriate label for the promotion of discussion.

Before I conclude, I want to pick up on what the noble and learned Lord, Lord Thomas, said about the Law Commission. That issue was also raised in Committee and I do not think we have had an answer from the Minister in either of those discussions. There was a commitment to refer to the Law Commission. Can the Minister inform me now of progress on that, or at least commit to writing to me as progress is made on reference to the Law Commission?

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Portrait Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Con)
- Hansard - -

With the noble Baroness’s permission, I will make a commitment to the second of her suggestions. I will write to her and continue this discussion.

Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle Portrait Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle (GP)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

I thank the Minister for his response. It is with regret, and a feeling that we really are delaying while the planet burns, that I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

--- Later in debate ---
Baroness Jones of Whitchurch Portrait Baroness Jones of Whitchurch (Lab)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My Lords, I thank the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett, for her amendment. She has indeed raised important issues about the limitations of the current right to roam legislation. As a member of the Ramblers for many years, I am hugely committed to improving public access to land for recreational and educational purposes and, as the noble Baroness said, our experience during Covid brought home the huge public enthusiasm for greater access to the countryside, with all the mental and physical health benefits that derive from it. But our recent experience also highlighted the constraints, with public roads blocked, car parks full and footpaths overrun as access was limited to the established, well-trodden paths.

I do not believe that the new-found love of the countryside will subside once the pandemic is over, so we need a new contract with landowners to make sure that everyone can benefit from the peace and tranquillity of nature. This is why we welcomed the provisions in the Agriculture Act which will reward landowners for opening up new routes of access across their land, but I am disappointed that greater public access is not one of the first sustainable farming initiative pilots. Perhaps the Minister will update us on when we might see those pilots introduced. I agree with the noble Baroness that we need greater right to roam, but we need more time to consider her proposals for a draft Bill. As her amendment stands, the provision for such a Bill is rather prescriptive. We know the limitations of the current Countryside Code, but I would have liked more time to explore what is meant by “a code of practice” in her Bill, and how it would be applied.

The new clause’s proposed subsection (3) provides a very limited group of exemptions and raises questions about such things as access to SSSI sites and other precious landscapes where we would want to prioritise habitat and species recovery. I hope the noble Baroness recognises that the proposal needs to be refined before becoming a draft Bill; nevertheless, we support the general principle and hope that the noble Lord will feel able to do so as well.

Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park Portrait Lord Goldsmith of Richmond Park (Con)
- Hansard - -

I thank the noble Baroness, Lady Bennett of Manor Castle, for her amendment. Without going into the arguments, everything she said about the benefits of access to nature, I and colleagues fully support and agree with. The Countryside and Rights of Way Act 2000 allows the establishment, recording and appeal of rights of way to agreed standards and sets out people’s rights and responsibilities.

The refreshed Countryside Code helps the public enjoy the countryside in a safe and respectful way, and we are supporting and enhancing access to the countryside in a number of different ways, including laying legislation to streamline the process of recording and changing rights of way. We are completing the England coastal path and creating a new northern national trail. Our agricultural plans set out examples of the types of actions that we envisage paying for under schemes which include engagement with the environment. We are incentivising access via our new England woodland creation offer. There is already extensive access to rivers and other waterways which are managed by navigation authorities, with licences available for recreation and leisure use. The Government’s position remains that public access to nature is a fundamentally good thing. However, the Government’s view is also that access to waterways which are not managed by navigation authorities should be determined through voluntary agreements between interested parties.

I hope that what I have said demonstrates to the noble Baroness that the Government very much share her concerns and aspirations in relation to access to nature and that she will be willing to withdraw her amendment.

Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle Portrait Baroness Bennett of Manor Castle (GP)
- Hansard - - - Excerpts

My Lords, I thank the Minister for his response and the noble Baroness, Lady Jones of Whitchurch, for her positive and cheering contribution. I very much echo the point she made about how disappointing it is that the sustainable farming initiative pilots do not contain such provisions and that it would be nice to see progress on that. I also thank her for highlighting the way Covid has brought about a sea change in many people’s relationship with the natural world.

On the questions the noble Baroness raised about the prescriptive nature of the amendment, it is very much based on Scottish law, which is already in place and has worked through exactly what the code might look like. It has been very well worked through in Scotland—so the model is very much there.

On the Minister’s response, I am pleased to hear his acknowledgement of the benefits of having people out in the countryside. That is something I will certainly be taking up with him in future. I also point out that he raised the issue of rivers. It is perhaps not very well understood outside certain communities that 90% of our rivers are off limits to wild swimmers, paddle-boarders and kayakers. Of course, wild swimming is a very fast-growing, popular and healthy pastime, and this is something that people are increasingly discovering for themselves and are very disappointed by, and it is something that very much needs to be raised.

None the less, given the hour—I hope we will have a more extensive debate on this at a more reasonable hour very soon—I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

--- Later in debate ---
Moved by
128: Clause 142, page 129, line 4, at end insert—
“( ) section (Report on elimination of discharges from storm overflows) (report on elimination of discharges from storm overflows) extends to England and Wales;”Member’s explanatory statement
This amendment provides for the duty of the Secretary of State to prepare a report on the elimination of discharges from storm overflows to extend to England and Wales.
--- Later in debate ---
Moved by
129: Clause 143, page 130, line 4, at end insert “and section (Report on elimination of discharges from storm overflows) (report on elimination of discharges from storm overflows);”
Member’s explanatory statement
This amendment provides for the duty of the Secretary of State to prepare a report on the elimination of discharges from storm overflows to come into force two months after Royal Assent.