East Antrim MP Sammy Wilson has said that the Government is sending out mixed messages with regards to air travel.
Mr Wilson said:
“Today’s analysis by the Climate Change Committee regarding what must be done to cut air travel and the consequences of not doing so gives further confirmation that the whole climate change agenda is about finding ways of for the Government to delve deeper into the pockets of the taxpayer.
By scaring people to death with exaggerated stories of the consequences of climate change or making them feel guilty about the impact of their lifestyles on the planet the Government is softening the public up for yet new taxes.
The latest assault on air travel, which is predicted to increase by 100% by 2030 will result in billions of pounds of tax being imposed on flights – pricing flights beyond the reach of many people, but not Government Ministers and environmental’ specialists’ who will continue to fly around the world at the taxpayers expense proclaiming the evils of carbon emissions without even seeing the irony of their inconsistent behaviour.
Alternatively the Climate Change Committee has argued that if we do not make air travel more expensive then we will have to tax in other ways – such as more tax for fuel or paying more for electricity so that we can reduce carbon emissions in this way. Either way the taxpayer loses and bloated Government wins.
All of this is against a backdrop of increasing doubt with regards to the science of climate change and predictions about what is happening to world temperature which prove to be more and more unreliable even in the face of increased concentrations of CO2.
Having exhausted many tax possibilities the Government has found a useful ally in the Climate Change Committee to promote new and vast taxing possibilities.
However another question has to be asked – where is the consistency? Labour rightly supported the expansion of Heathrow and it is important that we increase and improve our air links so that our economy can be the most competitive in the world.. However it is contradictory to make the case for this while at the same time calling for increased taxes on aviation which will not only harm business but also make it harder for all but the richest to travel by air.
The Government needs to be consistent in relation to air travel and further taxes on travel will not be welcomed by my constituents who will see through the attempt to be disguise them as green and see them as a further raid on their pockets.”
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