Air Quality - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 4:44 pm on 24th April 2017.

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Photo of Lord Gardiner of Kimble Lord Gardiner of Kimble The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs 4:44 pm, 24th April 2017

My Lords I do not think that the facts bear out what the noble Baroness said. In fact, it was during a Government in which her party was in coalition that £2 billion of taxpayers’ money was diverted: £400 million for ultra-low-emission vehicles, £600 million for the local sustainable transport fund, £224 million invested in cycling and more than £27 million since 2013 to retrofit and clean up more than 3,000 of the oldest vehicles. I hope that she would agree that that was a success during the time that her party was in coalition with mine. That is why £2 billion was diverted to that important subject.

On the question of how we will proceed, as I said, this is a short delay in the timetable, because we have purdah requirements. That is the advice that I have received. I fully acknowledge that this is a public health issue. That is one reason why considerable sums of money are being invested in it, why we will continue to do so and why we in the department very much want to bring forward these plans after the general election.