Saturday, 25 April 2009

*Boris Johnson - one year as Mayor of London.

As Boris Johnson approaches his first anniversary as London Mayor on 2nd May, Green Assembly Member, Darren Johnson AM, reflects on the Mayor's first year in office.

Darren said, "Although there have been one or two bright spots such as scrapping Ken Livingstone's six-lane road bridge and planting more trees, Boris Johnson's overall performance has been deeply depressing. We have seen wave after wave of green initiatives being scrapped, cancelled or cut including the £25 charge for gas guzzlers, new tram schemes and the London Cycle Network."

Johnson mayoralty - positives

* Thames Gateway six-lane road bridge abandoned, although crossing at Silvertown proposed
* Heathrow expansion opposed, although Thames Estuary airport proposed and expansion at City Airport supported
* Cycle hire and Superhighways have funding, although nothing yet for suburban cycle hubs
* Support for urban agriculture, allotments, and treeplanting
* Continued support for London Living Wage and Fair Trade initiative
* Mayor adopts Assembly proposal to commission work on amnesty for irregular migrants
* Continue green retro-fit programme for commercial buildings
* Major plans for street by street approach to home insulation
* Package of measures on knife crime includes some positive youth initiatives.

Johnson mayoralty - negatives

* Failure to provide leadership over police mishandling of G20 protests
* London Cycle Network (LCN+) funding cut by two thirds & no promise of completion
* £25 emissions charge for gas guzzlers and Western Extension of congestion charge zone dropped
* Low Emissions Zone will now not be expanded to 90,000 light goods vehicles in 2010
* Court action being prepared by European Union on failure to meet air quality targets
* Abandoned 100 public spaces program: Parliament Square improvement scheme; Victoria Embankment; three year study into changing one-way systems back to two-way systems
* Planning for new transport schemes abandoned: Cross River Tram; DLR extension Dagenham Dock; Croydon Tramlink, Oxford Street tram; large number of step free access tube schemes
* Three year freeze on bus expansion program
* Planned purchase of 70 hydrogen vehicles has been reduced to a trial of 10 hydrogen buses, although ambitious plans for electric vehicles announced
* Environment budget reduced by £139k
* Proposals to cut 114 posts at City Hall, may have impact on the London Mayor's ability to carry out his statutory duties, especially in relation to the environment
* Mishandled Damien Green affair -

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