Friday, September 19, 2008

'Sustinability' Forum.

Was down in Cardiff yesterday. Bit of a sad day for us. We were moving furniture out of our flat in Century Wharf. Tenants are moving in next week. Its a lovely flat, and Mrs D in particular has enjoyed our stay there. But its just too costly to carry it on, while we use it so little. Cardiff will be day trips from now on.

Other reason I was in the Welsh Capitol yesterday was the first meeting of the Conservative 'Welsh Sustainability Forum'. The idea is that a group of individuals with an interest in the environment put together a package of recommendation for consideration by the Conservative Party for inclusion in it's next Assembly election manifesto. All members of the 'Forum' are politically independent, except me. Conservative Spokesman on the Environment, Darren Millar AM has asked me to chair this group. Our first meeting went very well. Don't expect the Party to take on board everything we'll recommend, and yesterday we had a good debate about wind farms and the Severn Barrage. Better not post about what was said though.

Arrived home at 2.00 am. Had a 'Last supper' at the Pearl - where we ate on the day we moved in to our flat. Drove home because we didn't want to stay in a flat denuded of those things that made in 'homely'. It would have been ironic if the accident in Croatia had been worse. In fact, if it had been fatal, I would have been immediately returned to the National Assembly as 'list' replacement AM for Mid and West Wales! I should add that I am very pleased indeed that Nick was not badly hurt.


Stonemason said...

What a let down ....... you say

"a good debate about wind farms and the Severn Barrage" .....

..... and then disapoint with .....

"Better not post about what was said though."

Don't go all PC, that's Plaid Cymru, on us, a silent debate is no debate.

Glyn Davies said...

stonemason - Sorry but the aim is to have some genuine 'blue skies' over our forum meetings. I wasn't looking to stimulate debate on our meeting - even if I don't mind on my blog. Aside from our meeting, my views are fairly negative about on-shore wind, more positive about oo-shore, suspicious of the idea of a Severn Barrage, but keen to find a way of using the potential of the tide, positive about every other form of renewable, and accept that nuclear is inevitable. And also positive about the idea of using Council Tax to encourage domestic energy efficiency. But what our forum will recommend may well be quite different. We're planning four meetings, and some engagement with the Conservative Party's policy groups at Westminster.

Glyn Davies said...

Sorry - more positive about off-shore I meant to say.

clare said...

Well done Glyn on becoming chair of the Conservative's Welsh Sustainability Forum! We need people like you in positions like this.
I have a question for you, linked to your new role.
Some months ago, David Cameron announced a great policy that I welcomed. He said that if he got into Government, he would put in place a series of green taxes on gas-guzzling cars etc., to help save the environment and to pay for tax-cuts for good, hard-working families like mine!
This brilliant suggestion, is still Conservative policy isn't it? I havent much about it lately.
As a mother, I think that would be greatly welcomed by family-oriented people in Montgomeryshire - we are just the kind of people who need a financial leg-up from the Tories.

Anonymous said...

I dunno, this "oo-shore" sounds interesting, maybe LO might have something asteroidal to say abou tit.

Anonymous said...

Sorry - more about it I meant to say.

Stonemason said...

With limited information available concerning the Severn Barrage, it is difficult to make a judgement.

The big question is how will Plaid react to the Nuclear issue, personally, having been involved with UKAEA decommissioning I am much more confident in its use.

Energy efficiency is a tough one, a little like getting people to recycle.

Glyn Davies said...

Clare - Its probably best for me not to say much about taxation policy. I would be surprised if George Osborne doesn't outline some of our ideas next week. But in geneal, I'm supportive of 'green taxes' as long as there is an easily identifyable tax benefit elsewhere - otherwise 'green taxes' lose credibility and are just seen as another stealth tax.

anon - Pity you correct itt. 'abou tit' sounds quite an interesting concept!

stonemason - Doesn't matter what Plaid think about nuclear. Their support for a replacement for Wylfa has totally undermined any opposition that they may have. I was also anti-nuclear, until I realised a few years ago that there is no choice. I think we have to await the outcome of the study into the Barrage before we make our final judgements. And I agree that energy efficiency is only going to become a reality if there is an obvious financial benefit.

An ignorant stupid American said...

'abou tit' is a new species of pigeon that has moved to my neighbor’s balconies. I had about it, then I discovered a way of keeping them off my balcony and I named this disheartened breed of pigeon Columbidae abou-tit based on the observation that they can't process two passive threats within a time interval of around 1 second. I've also discovered that a passive threat that they had started to ignore (a couple of artificial owls) suddenly were elevated to fresh owls once their attention was taken up with a second passive threat. A non-passive threat became a passive threat upon combination with a second passive threat ... there's got to be a patent claim in here somewhere ...

What is claimed:

1. A method of elevating a first non-passive threat to a first passive threat upon combination with a second passive threat so long as the first and second passive threats are affected on a time scale of about 1 second.

2. The method of claim 1, wherein said method is applied to at least one pesky-annoying pigeon intent on inhabiting a balcony adjoining an apartment in an apartment building.

3. The method of claim 2, a first non-passive threat is combined with said first and second passive threats.

4. The method of claim 3, wherein said first non-passive threat is a selected from the group consisting of: a large mallet, a ten pound hammer, a bowl of hot water, an in-flight bath tub, a U.S. phalanx firing approximately one hundred rounds of depleted uranium per second, a cup of molten lead, and an old tin of evaporated milk (with vitamin D added).

Anonymous said...

Glyn please keep on as an independent voice for us in Montgomeryshire and away from Party stuff. The tories will vote for you - the farmers will back you and those of us who have come to live here will - if we feel that you will put the area first - which you have done - without fear of favour. I saw you at a postal meeting in our village and many of those of us who have ticked the labour box in the past will back you - but keep focused on the patch not the party. all the best
john, jean, mari bach and mali

clare said...

Dear Glyn:

Following on my question here yesterday, I hope you don't think I am some kind of spy from Conservative Central Office, checking that you remain 'on message' during your campaign. However, I must admit, I was more than a little shocked to see this headline on the ConservativeHome website this morning. Even I am impressed with my own presience!:
"Tories set to suspend plans for green taxation"
Anyway, the story is this:
"A senior (Tory) frontbencher has now told us that, as part of an ongoing review of economic policy, higher green taxation is very unlikely to feature in the next Conservative manifesto."
Can I say how gutted I am at this news Glyn and I am sure as the new Chair of the Conservative's Welsh Sustainability Forum, you will be too! As you so eloquently said yesterday in your reply to me:
"I'm supportive of 'green taxes' as long as there is an easily identifyable tax benefit elsewhere."
Well it looks like Mr Cameron - having spent two years trying to persuade me of his green credentials in order to make me vote for him, is now going to make me (and probably many others in Montgormeryshire) take another look at what Mr. Clegg or Mr Brown, have to offer us.
That is such a shame Glyn. I genuinely believed David Cameron was sincere in his promise to tackle climate change - but seemingly not.
You are a big-hitter in the Tory Party, will you promise to make representations on behalf of people like me to high-command and get them to re-instate this as a pledge please?
I really think this break of promise is going to cost you lots of votes unless you do something about it.
As a family oriented mother who cares about the enviroment, I feel let down, I can tell you.
Clare (Welshpool)

Glyn Davies said...

aisa - The pigeon is not a member of the tit family, of which there are seven members in the UK. And you may be interesred to know that we have named the newly converted barn opposite our house as Cil-y-Gwdihw, which is Welsh for owl's retreat.

Clare - I, too had seen the reference on ConservativeHome, and will be disappointeed if it turns out to true. However, I will wait until after the Conservatve Party conference before commenting. Very often these stories turn out to be untrue, or grossly exaggeratwed. We will see.

I also believe that the Conservative Party must retain the commitment that David Cameron has made in respect of the environment. I accept that there will have to be a radical look at taxation (which I want to see reduced) because of the quite horrifying debts that the next Government will inherit, but I can see no reason why we cannot begin to introduce change which will support families and concern for the environmental consequences of the way we live. Perhaps you will comment again in a week's time, when we know if there is any change in policy or not.