Greater London Authority
This business report aims to investigate the policies affecting the environment in London. A review will be made into the responsibilities of the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the mayor. A critical evaluation of the evidence will be provided. A survey of opinions amongst GSM students will be presented and a conclusion drawn on the effectiveness of the Greater London Authority (GLA) and the Mayor in tackling key issues which relate to the environment. It has been estimated that London, the capital of England, has a population of more than eight million (www. tandard. co.
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uk). With a 0. 7% fall in GDP in the second quarter of 2012 (GLAEconomics, 2012) the Mayor of London (MoL) plays an important role in ‘improving London for all’ (london. gov. uk). The Greater London Authority (GLA) is a top-tier administrative body for London (http://en. wikipedia. org/wiki/Greater_London_Authority) which consists of an elected mayor, the London assembly and permanent members of GLA staff who collaboratively work towards design a better capital (www. london. gov. uk/who-runs-london/greater-london-authority).
The MoL is responsible for the economic, environmental, social enhancement of the city (www. london. gov. uk/who-runs-london/mayor/role). Plans and policies are developed to tackle the issues effect London such as transport, housing, health inequalities and environmental issues (www. london. gov. uk/who-runs-london/mayor/role). Environmental issues can be defined as the overuse of natural resources (Fransson and Garling, 1999) and can be categorised into air, water, radiation and odor pollution (http://www. environment-agency. ov. uk). The United Kingdom (UK), ranked eighth in the world for emit the highest carbon dioxide emissions (http://www. ucsusa. org). The UK generates 586 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. Even though significant efforts are being made to reduce our carbon footprint such as building the world’s largest wind farm, pollution due transportation however still remains a major problem in the UK (http://www. actionforourplanet. com). Environmental concern has risen on the political agenda since 2003. Various olicies have been introduced since then, relating to the environment. In 2009, a document entitled ‘Leading to a Greener London’ was published setting out the aims for London to reduce its carbon foot print and become ‘one of the worlds greenest cities’ (https://www. london. gov. uk/priorities/environment/vision-strateg. The Mayors Municipal waste strategy (2011) sets out to improve the life of Londoners by retrofitting London, greening London and cleaner air for London (http://www. london. gov. uk/sites/default/files/Municipal%20Waste_FINAL. pdf).
Retrofitting or mordenising our homes and workplaces to be more energy efficient is considered to be a vital action, as this accounts for nearly eighty percent (80%) of the cities emissions. Greening London consists of increasing London’s tree coverage and green spaces in order to improve air quality, reduce the impact of extreme weather conditions and increase the vibrancy of the city. The mayor has already made various steps towards achieving cleaner air for London which includes introducing new cleaner hybrid buses (http://www. london. gov. k/priorities/transport/green-transport/hybrid-buses), charging points for electric cars (https://www. sourcelondon. net) and barlays cycle hire is due to be expanding to south west London in 2014 (http://www. tfl. gov. uk/corporate/media/newscentre/archive/25711. aspx). Nevertheless, evidence shows that air pollution in our capital has exceeding EU limits and proves that London has a long way to go to improve emissions (http://www. london. gov. uk/media/press_releases_london_assembly/new-figures-reveal-limits-harmful-air-pollution-breached-across-capital).
The business waste Strategy (2011) sets out to direct the management of business waste. London currently produces 20 million tones of waste a year. With London growing, this amount is due to increase. The aim of this policy is to educate and encourage Londoners to reduce, reuse and recycle their household and support business’s to dispose of their waste more efficiently and effectively (http://www. london. gov. uk/priorities/environment/vision-strategy/waste). These policies have filtered down to local councils and a proposal has been drawn in the borough of Croydon to target those who persistently refuse to recycle with a fixed penalty of ? 0 (http://www. croydon. gov. uk/environment/rrandw/recycling-rates/). However, even with the governments increasing efforts to try a reduce waste and encourage recycling, there are many areas in society where this is not happening. For example, the government’s voluntary scheme to cut the use if throwaway bags issued by supermarkets has been a disappointment. The use of plastic bags has increased for the second year running (http://www. guardian. co. uk/environment/2012/jul/05/plastic-bag-use-rise-supermarkets). In response, a proposal making it mandatory to charge all single use carrier bags may be enforced (http://www. ondon. gov. uk/media/press_releases_assembly_member/news-jenny-jones-am-calling-charge-all-single-use-carrier-bags). In conclusion, government will always make proposals and draw up policies however sometimes implementing these policies at a local level is very challenging. Even though the GLA want to see improvements and continuously demand, support needs to be made at a local level to help guide local authorities through continuous changes enforced upon them. REFERENCING FRANSSON, N. GARLING,T. (1999) ENVIRONMENTALCONCERN: CONCEPTUAL DEFINITIONS, MEASUREMENT METHODS, AND RESEARCH FINDINGS.
Journal of Environmental Psychology, 19 (4) pp 369–382 http://www. actionforourplanet. com/#/top-10-polluting-countries/4541684868 http://www. london. gov. uk/media/press_releases_london_assembly/new-figures-reveal-limits-harmful-air-pollution-breached-across-capital http://www. london. gov. uk/priorities/transport/green-transport/hybrid-buses http://www. london. gov. uk/sites/default/files/Business%20Waste_FINAL. pdf). http://www. london. gov. uk/sites/default/files/Business%20Waste_FINAL. pdf http://www. london. gov. uk/sites/default/files/londons_economy_today_no119_26071