New clause 30 - Zero waste strategy

Part of Waste and Emissions Trading Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 10th April 2003.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Norman Baker Norman Baker Liberal Democrat, Lewes 4:00 pm, 10th April 2003

That is typically helpful of the Minister, who is much loved by all of us on the Committee and beyond. He is not an isolated figure—he is admired by Liberal Democrats if not in Government circles, even though, for reasons that escape me, he made an uncharacteristically partisan point about Orders in Council. However, to pick up

the point made by the hon. Member for Bexhill and Battle, I would remind him that I tabled a parliamentary question some time ago asking why he was not in the Cabinet. That was when the Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions was in place, with a Secretary of State in the Cabinet. The Transport Minister was then No. 2 in the DETR and to make a level playing field, the Environment Minister should have been put in the Cabinet, yet our Environment Minister was not. Apart from the qualities that he brings, it would indicate a wider respect for the environment by the Government. That is why I keep banging away about the fact that the Government's environmental record should be the Minister's environmental record. If I make a plea for him to be given a Cabinet position, I am sure that that will put the mochas on it once and for all.

Lastly, in terms of bring and buy, I refer the Minister to the comments that I made on Second Reading. We want local sustainability, minimum transport movements and reuse of materials. The best example that I can give him is Harvey's brewery in my constituency. It produces fantastic local beer in Lewes and sells it locally in glass bottles with deposits. They are all returned to Harvey's. I shall be happy to supply the Minister with a bottle of Harvey's beer—if he does not regard it as a bribe—so that he can enjoy it and return the bottle to me to return to the brewery in due course.

Question put and agreed to.

Clause 17, as amended, ordered to stand part of the Bill.