The soundbite came on the Week in Westminster with Labour’s Elliot Morley and the LibDems’ Susan Kramer.
Mr Morley defended Gordon Brown’s environmental credentials by pointing to the Chancellor’s introduction of the climate change levy and the world’s first carbon emissions trading scheme. John Gummer countered by saying that the proportion of green taxes had gone down under Labour (BBC) and that the LibDems had voted against VAT on domestic fuel. Ms Kramer said that the Tories were not green at a local level and pointed to Richmond Tories’ opposition to a LibDem tax on the London borough’s 4x4s. Peter Oborne, chair of the discussion, noted that Tory conference-goers had recently vetoed higher taxation of air travel.
The politicians started outdoing each other during the interview. John Gummer said that people would see…
"…The biggest change in any party’s views, or any party of any kind, that we have ever had. We [Conservatives] are going to show people that you only deal with climate change by a very major shift in the whole system of taxation away from taxes on families and on businesses towards replacement taxes on polluters."
Susan Kramer thought everyone should copy her and buy an eco kettle. Elliot Morley hoped that everyone would eventually have their own personal carbon allowance in his brave new, green world.
Editor’s note: "Politics is at its worst when all the political parties start agreeing like this. Remember the consensus in favour of the ERM? No mainstream party has taken the critical view of the Stern report that it deserves. No political leader is saying that adaptation is the most sensible response to the risk of climate change, as Lord Lawson has advocated. No manifesto appears likely to put more pressing issues of international justice or nuclear proliferation at the the top of the political agenda. All very disappointing."
Related link: Tomato environmentalism.