Lawson Hails New Broom At Environment
The Times, 6 September: The new Cabinet minister in charge of the environment has been endorsed by Lord Lawson, the noted climate change sceptic, for his “reason and sense” on the issue.
Owen Paterson was promoted from Northern Ireland to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs yesterday in a major boost for the right.
Mr Paterson is likely to use the berth to tackle the EU Common Fisheries Policy, which he has described as “grotesque”. The Lib Dems have also criticised the policy, so he may be able to find consensus for reform on the issue.
The issue of climate change is controlled by a different department, but the overlap between the two ministries, particularly on Cabinet committees, means his views are likely to have an impact on policy.
However he has also campaigned against wind farms and the cables needed to connect them to the grid, calling wind energy a “massive waste of consumers’ money” and called for an end to all energy subsidies.
The endorsement by Lord Lawson, the former Chancellor, will cause the most nervousness among environmentalists. “He is in fact one of the most able and promising young men or women around the cabinet and therefore his promotion to environment is extremely welcome… he is a man of reason and sense.”