Sunday, 7 March 2010

Localism

Having a bearing on the preceding post, Julian Glover has an article in the Guardian entitled "The painful limits of localism". In his article Glover highlights the example of how councillors vetoed the building of a new Tesco supermarket, against the wishes of bureaucrats and lobbyists. He then poses the question what if the planning application had been for a wind farm or a nuclear power station in order for the country to meet its 'low carbon' targets and should not central government make that decision?

What Glover does not understand is that no matter what the planning application, if we are to have true localism, it does not matter - it is up to local residents to decide, not central government. In any event, if the present government had not made such a cock-up of our energy needs, was not under the rule of the EU thumb on energy matters, the example he quotes would not have arisen - but again I am guilty of digressing........

Before those anti-NIMBYists climb all over me, how about a little bit of 'carrot' in situations Glover imagines. Supposing the proponents for the wind farm, or nuclear power station, were to offer - in return for planning approval - 'greatly reduced' electricity prices for 'x' number of years to those residents who would be inconvenienced by such a project? That would demonstrate true localism in operation, as whichever way the decision went, it would have been made by local people. Is that not the definition of localism?

2 comments:

Anonymous said...

Makes perfect sense to me but the fly in the ointment is government is nothing more than a corporation driven by a bottom line.

Witterings From Witney said...

A,

Pleased we think alike - it may well be that government will have a few more lines on its bottom when the people begin to kick its arse!