London, 19 Nov 2019 - The creation of at least 100,000 new socially rented homes a year is what everyone who is concerned about the tragedy of 350.000 homeless people in the UK wants to see realised, it’s the commitment those who care about others and not just about their own money and welbeing, want to hear from our politicians.
Homelessness in the UK is a national disgrace and the tangible effect of the radical politics of protection of property owners (the widest percentage of voters), banks interests and real estate speculation enacted by Tories over the last ten years.
Photo Copyright © Judy Maciejowska/The Green Party UK
The ‘Green New Deal’ in the Green Party Manifesto launched today in London, is set to make homes more green and accessible through low carbon construction and retrofitting, converting and extending existing buildings and by giving power and resources for elected mayors and local governments to transform the communities they represent locally.
An example for this is the fight of the Green Party co-leader Sian Berry in the Greater London Authority to give the Mayor power to regulate rents, as in London rents are increasingly unaffordable.
“Local people will be directly involved - the Manifesto reads - actively engaging all of us in the future of the places where we live and work. It will also mean new forms of common ownership throughout vital parts of our infrastructure, such as waterways, buses, parks and railways”.
According to the National Housing Federation's figures, Great Britain needs to build 145,000 affordable homes each year for the next 10 years, including 90,000 for social rent in order to end the housing crisis.
But such a huge number of new buildings need huge investments: “A future government must invest £12.8bn a year for the next 10 years for new social housing” said Kate Henderson is chief executive of the Federation.
The Green Party plan requires £100bn investments for the conversion of the emissions from polluting CO2 to clean ones (electricity, hydrogen, solar...).
But what is really relevant in the Manifesto is that the plan implies that we do not need to just build all new houses, but reconvert and extend the existing properties bringing them to green standards. The Greens want to change the current planning system to incentivise renovation, extension and improvement of existing buildings, rather than relying on new build, to reduce the use of steel, concrete, cladding and finishes, which produce massive amounts of carbon in their manufacture.
That's why the housing plan is part of the comprehensive action to make the country carbon neutral by 2030, as explained by Green co-leader Jonathan Bartley “We will decarbonise every sector of the economy by 2030 while delivering social justice across Britain”. “Conservatives pledged to cut them by 2050 this is not good enough. LibDem said net-zero by 2045: not good enough” as well as Labour members plans to cut emission is not enough, he said.
How the 'Green New Deal' could fix the housing crisis