Treehugger Can Reveal Labour's Green Budget

The British have a quaint way of presenting their budgets to the nation. The Chancellor prepares it and then leaks it to the press a week or so before the budget day so that by the time it becomes reality, everyone already knows more or less what is in it. This budget, to be revealed on Wednesday, is a key one for Gordon Brown, Chancellor, because he is competing, well in advance of an election, with the leader of the Conservative party, David Cameron, to prove who is greener. According to confidential sources (i.e. every newspaper in town) Mr. Brown will encourage people to install solar panels, wind turbines and other carbon-free sources of energy by exempting any money made by selling the excess power back to the national grid from income tax . He will also increase road taxes on gas-guzzlers such as 4X4's to about £400 over the next two years. Owners of many other cars are expected to face a modest above-inflation rise but owners of the least polluting cars will enjoy tax reductions, it is believed. He will also announce that he is lobbying the European Union to cut the tax on energy efficient goods in the home. That would include double-glazing of windows, low energy light bulbs and insulation. As for airplane travel, the British public’s passion (aka binge flying)—he has already doubled the duty, but it remains to be seen whether he has the nerve to do more. Watch for Wednesday’s report to see whether the insiders got it right. :: Guardian

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