Keith Taylor MEP for the South East Weekly Update

23 March 2018

23rd March

Green MEP lambasts Government’s ‘open borders’ Brexit plan

Responding to the Government’s plans for an ‘open borders’ Brexit, Keith Taylor, the Green MEP for Kent, said: “Astonishingly, in the face of repeated warnings from the Port of Dover, haulage firms and industry experts that leaving the EU Customs Union will turn much of Kent into a lorry park post-Brexit, Chris Grayling has decided the answer is for Britain to do anything but take back control. Instead, the Transport Secretary is proposing an open borders Brexit which would abolish border checks entirely.”

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Green MEP welcomes National Park authority notice UKOG to leave Markwells Wood, South Downs

Responding to the news that the South Downs National Park Authority has issued the oil and gas drilling firm UKOG a notice to ‘shut up shop’ once and for all at Markwells Wood in the South Downs National Park, Keith Taylor, Green MEP for the South East, said: “I’m delighted the South Downs National Park Authority has told UKOG to shut up shop at Markwells Wood once and for all. This is a welcome victory for the Green campaigners, local residents and anyone who cares about protecting our precious national parks.”

“Markwell’s Wood is a beautiful and unique habitat and with only 2% of Britain being covered by this important ancient woodland I am extremely happy that it is going to stay that way.”

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Green MEP welcomes High Court delay to ‘chilling’ UKOG injunction bid against protesters

The High Court in London adjourned a case today brought by UK Oil and Gas (UKOG), which aimed to restrict lawful actions against its sites across the South East.

Responding to today’s High Court decision, which was secured by five women campaigners against the oil industry in South East England, Keith Taylor, Green MEP for the region, said:

“Today’s decision has again proven the importance of dedicated and passionate local residents and environmental campaigners. More power to their elbow. These relentlessly peaceful heroes are standing up for not only our environment but our civil liberties too.”

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Green MEP responds to Government’s Major Road Network consultation

Keith Taylor, Green MEP for the South East and a member of the European Parliament’s Transport Committee, has today submitted his response to the Government’s proposals for the creation of a Major Road Network (MRN).

In his submission, the senior Green MEP said: “Promising a long-term funding stream for road building runs counter to how we need to be thinking about, and acting on transport in the 21st Century. Building more roads will not reduce congestion and it is wholly unacceptable for the Government to be promoting such a wholesale effort to entrench Britain’s ‘car as king’ mentality. Not only that, the report upon which these proposals are based clearly mandated a consideration of the environmental impacts of such a massive, outmoded infrastructure project. The Government, however, has ignored and removed it from the MRN proposals completely.”

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Green MEP calls for Government to withdraw support for a fracking industry it admits won’t deliver

Keith Taylor MEP, European Chair of the Climate Parliament, is calling out the Government’s “duplicity” on fracking and urging Ministers to remove support for the “hopeless” industry.

The senior Green politician’s intervention comes amidst growing calls for the Government to publish a suppressed report which it admits will “call into question the viability of the fracking industry in the UK.” Earlier this week, a Minister for the Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy Department was also forced to admit that the Government has done no research on how much fracking could support gas demand, despite, at the same time, claiming shale gas is crucial for the UK’s energy system.

Keith Taylor, Green MEP for the South East, said: “First the Government predicted England would be defaced by 4,000 shale gas wells by 2025 before downgrading that forecast to just 155 wells scarring our precious countryside. Now Ministers aren’t even confident England’s failing fracking industry has a future at all. In fact, the Tories are refusing to release the latest report on fracking’s viability precisely because they know it will reveal it isn’t just an environmental disaster but an economic no hope too – with Ministers admitting as much.”

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Greens respond to Cambridge Analytica scandal, question EU ref legitimacy and highlight new EU privacy directive

The UK’s Green MEPs have condemned Facebook for being “actively complicit” in the harvesting of millions of users’ data subsequently used by Cambridge Analytica to launch a “propaganda campaign” to “hijack democracy” in the US Presidential election and the UK referendum on EU membership.

Keith Taylor, Jean Lambert, and Molly Scott Cato added that the scandal both “calls into question” the legitimacy of the EU referendum and highlights the “vital importance” of the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which offers consumers greater control over their privacy online and comes into force in the UK in May 2018.

Keith Taylor, Green MEP for the South East, added: “The Cambridge Analytica scandal begs an important question about the ease with which democratic processes can be hijacked in a social media age where a handful of firms control the entire virtual public sphere.”

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Green MEP joins TV naturalist to raise alarm over bird population decline

Keith Taylor, MEP for the South East and the Green Party’s Animals Spokesperson, joined TV presenter and conservationist Chris Packham at an event in the European Parliament on Thursday, 22 March to voice alarm over the “catastrophic” collapse of bird populations across Europe.

At the event, which also focused on the campaign for the Maltese government to outlaw the spring hunt on the small Mediterranean island which targets migrating bird species such as the critically endangered Turtle Dove, Keith Taylor MEP, Vice President of the European Parliament’s Animal Welfare Intergroup, said: “Birds are the pulse of the natural world, that their populations are flatlining is a national and international crisis. It is a disgrace that numbers continue to decline, more than 60 years after the crisis started, and more than 25 years after political leaders became aware of it.”

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