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Environment Bill

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 6:43 pm on 28th October 2019.

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Photo of Theresa Villiers Theresa Villiers The Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 6:43 pm, 28th October 2019

I have taken a lot of interventions and I need to make some progress.

We are determined to seize the environmental opportunities that come with leaving the EU, including: the opportunity to create a better, more sustainable means of managing our fish stocks and a fairer deal for the communities who have lost out under the common fisheries policy; and the opportunity to support our farmers to cut emissions and pollution, and protect nature with a new system of farm support based on public money for the public goods.

The Bill will help us to realise the bold vision set out in our 25-year environment plan for urgent meaningful action across society towards long-term environmental targets, so that global Britain can go further and faster for our natural environment. Nine consultations underpin the proposed legislation. They received over 400,000 responses. Over half the Bill’s measures extend beyond England. I want to thank the devolved Administrations for working with us on the Bill, so that we can benefit the environment right across our United Kingdom.

The Bill will enshrine environmental principles in UK law for the first time, ensuring that the environment will be placed at the centre of Government decision making. The following principles are on the face of the Bill: the polluter should pay; harm should be prevented or rectified at source; the environment should be taken into consideration across Government policy; and a precautionary approach should be taken.