Climate Emergency Fund to be set up with ‘rainy day’ money?
MONEY from the ‘rainy day fund’ should be ploughed into tackling climate change because the environmental crisis is ‘not the fault of the current taxpayer’, according to new backbench proposals.
An amendment to the Government Plan, which is due to be debated later this month, lodged by the Environment, Housing and Infrastructure Scrutiny Panel would, if approved, see £5 million paid from the Strategic Reserve – known as the rainy day fund – into the newly established Climate Emergency Fund.
Panel member Deputy Kirsten Morel said: ‘The panel wants to take the £5m start-up money for the Climate Emergency Fund from the Strategic Reserve rather than the Consolidated Fund [the government’s current account].
‘This is, after all, an emergency and it’s an intergenerational matter. The climate emergency is not the fault of the current taxpayer, so they should not be asked to pay for it.
‘The Strategic Reserve has been built up over decades, so it would be justified to use it for this.’
Another proposed change lodged by the panel would halve the additional 4p that would be added to fuel duty to raise money for the Climate Emergency Fund, on the basis that its spending strategy has not been outlined yet.
And two amendments lodged by the Economic and International Affairs Scrutiny Panel also call for spending on sport development in Jersey to be increased to £250,000 after being cut to £125,000, while axing £150,000 of spending on a proposed Financial Stability Board to provide the necessary funding.
Deputy Morel said that the amendment to halve the fuel duty was justified because it had not been outlined how the money would be spent.
‘We haven’t seen the climate change strategy yet, but they want to put 4p on the cost of fuel,’ he said.
‘I don’t think that they should be raising a tax if we don’t know how it is going to be spent yet.’
Deputy Morel, who is the chairman of the Economic Affairs Scrutiny Panel, went on to say that the proposed funding boost for sport should be financed by axing the Financial Stability Board because, in his view, it was unnecessary.
‘Funding for sport has been halved to £125,000 from £250,000. We want to increase that back up,’ he said
‘We are not sure why they need the Financial Stability Board, whose job is to identify any potential threats to our finance industry.
‘Firms within the finance industry have plenty of economists working for them doing that already, and it is part of the JFSC’s remit as well.
‘So, we are not sure what the point of this board is or what it does to justify £150,000 of funding.’
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