Nick Clegg launches Liberal Democrat environment manifesto

The Liberal Democrats have set out radical plans to protect the environment and set the economy on a path to a zero carbon Britain. The proposals include a £3.1bn green economic stimulus package, plans to slash energy use and improve energy efficiency, and a UK Infrastructure Bank to embed green investment for the long term.

Commenting, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg said:

“This election is not like any other.

“Climate scientists tell us that the next government will be the last that can stop dangerous climate change.

“That is a huge responsibility for the party that wins this election. But it’s an even bigger responsibility for the voters that will choose them on May 6.

“So my message is this: don’t settle for a Labour party that has had thirteen years to deliver on the environment and has failed. Don’t settle for a Conservative party that talks the talk on green issues, only to align themselves with climate change deniers in the European Parliament. And don’t give your vote to a Green Party that cannot make a difference in Westminster.

“Instead, choose the only party that was taking a stand on saving the planet well before it became fashionable. The only party that has led the way on tackling climate change, from championing the 10:10 campaign in our councils, to setting out radical plans in Parliament to cut Britain’s carbon emissions. Choose the only party that in the wake of the economic crisis is setting out a credible vision for a new and sustainable economy.

“Something really exciting is happening in British politics. This is a huge opportunity to set Britain on the road to a prosperous and green future.

“We should seize it.”

Download our environment manifesto (Adobe pdf document)

Another take on the manifesto

Have you seen “Believe in Fairness” yet? At Tameside Lib Dems we love this animation of the key points of the Liberal Democrat manifesto.

We hope you’ll take five minutes out to watch it — there’s music but no speech so if you do not have speakers on your PC or have hearing difficulties you don’t miss out on any of the important stuff.

Fairness – The Liberal Democrat Manifesto Launch

Nick Clegg MP

Lib Dem leader Nick Clegg MP

Nick Clegg has launched the Liberal Democrat General Election manifesto. The manifesto sets out four clear priorities of fair taxes, a fair chance for every child, a fair economy, and a fair deal by cleaning up politics.

At the launch, Nick Clegg said:

“Every manifesto needs to have an idea at its heart. The basic idea that animates this manifesto is something I have always believed. I believe every single person is extraordinary.

“The tragedy is that we have a society where too many people never get to fulfil that extraordinary potential.

“My view – the liberal view – is that government’s job is to help them to do it. Not to tell people how to live their lives. But to make their choices possible, to release their potential, no matter who they are.

“The way to do that is to take power away from those who hoard it. To challenge vested interests. To break down privilege. To clear out the bottlenecks in our society that block opportunity and block progress. And so give everyone a chance to live the life they want.

“There’s a simple word for those ideas, and it’s a word this manifesto is built on: fairness.”

The Liberal Democrat manifesto outlines 4 steps to a fairer Britain:

Fair taxes that put money back in your pocket

  • The first £10,000 you earn tax-free: a tax cut of £700 for most people
  • 3.6 million low earners and pensioners freed from income tax completely
  • Paid for in full by closing loopholes that unfairly benefit the wealthy and polluters

A fair future creating jobs by making Britain greener

  • Break up the banks and get them lending again to protect real businesses
  • Honesty about the tough choices needed to cut the deficit
  • Green growth and jobs that last by investing in infrastructure

A fair chance for every child

  • Ensure children get the individual attention they need by cutting class sizes
  • Made possible by investing £2.5 billion in schools targeted to help struggling pupils
  • Give schools the freedom to make the right choices for their pupils

A fair deal by cleaning up politics

  • Put trust back into politics by giving you the right to sack corrupt MPs
  • Restore and protect hard-won British civil liberties with a Freedom Bill
  • Overhaul Westminster completely: fair votes, an elected House of Lords, all politicians to pay full British taxes

You can download the Liberal Democrat manifesto at along with summary documents and videos for each of the key areas, order a paper copy and find audio and easy read text versions.

Nick Clegg puts fairness at the heart of the Liberal Democrat manifesto

Today, Nick Clegg set out the priorities that will be at the heart of the Party’s election manifesto. The value that connects everything the party wants to achieve is fairness. There are four priorities for how the Liberal Democrats will make Britain a fairer place: fair taxes; a fair start for every child; fair, clean and local politics; and a fair, green economy with jobs that last.

There are four priorities for how the Liberal Democrats will make Britain a fairer place: fair taxes; a fair start for every child; fair, clean and local politics; and a fair, green economy with jobs that last.

The first priority is to introduce fair taxes, with radical proposals for the biggest tax reform in generations. The Liberal Democrats will close loopholes for the richest and introduce a tax on mansions to fund tax cuts of £700 for everyone else. No-one will pay income tax on the first £10,000 they earn, meaning millions of low earners and pensioners will stop paying taxes altogether, while millions more will get hundreds of pounds back in their pockets. Only the Liberal Democrats will make taxes permanently fair.

The next priority is to give every child the fair start they deserve through a huge transformation of our education system that will build the foundations of fair society. That means cutting class sizes so children get the individual attention they need to thrive. The Liberal Democrats will be putting an extra £2.5 billion into schools to pay for more teachers, better discipline and catch-up classes so children get the individual attention they all need. This means an average of £2,500 extra per pupil for the schools teaching the million most deprived children in the country, funded by taking above-average earners out of the tax credit system and cutting wasteful programmes at the Department for Education. The Liberal Democrats will also phase out tuition fees over the course of six years, so that, after school, everyone who gets the grades has the opportunity to go to university without fear of debt, no matter what their background.

Thirdly, the Liberal Democrats are the only party committed to real change of our political system. This means getting big money and corrupt donors out of politics altogether, reducing the number of MPs by 150, giving power over the police and NHS to local communities, changing the voting system to abolish safe seats and giving you the right to sack corrupt MPs. These are changes that would upend our political establishment. Neither Labour or the Conservatives will ever offer change on this scale – they will defend the status quo to the last. Only the Liberal Democrats offer the chance for a different politics. Another whitewash is unacceptable, we need permanent change to make politics clean, fair and local.

The Liberal Democrats will shift the economy away from the traditional over-reliance on the City of London and on financial services. Our plans will usher in a new era where growth is enabled in every part of Britain in a way that promotes green technology and creates lasting jobs. We will put an end to the casino banking that caused the financial crisis by breaking up the banks and encouraging regional and local ways to bring competition back to the financial sector and make sure businesses can find the money they need to grow. Under our plans, councils will regain control of business rates, reconnecting local enterprise with local politics; Local Enterprise Funds will help people invest in growing businesses in their area and Regional Stock Exchanges will give companies a way to move into public equity without the huge risks and costs of a London listing. The Liberal Democrats will also create a new National Infrastructure Bank to bring in private money to build the transport links, energy grid and public buildings we need for a sustainable, low carbon economy in every part of Britain.