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Dear Rishi… Join our campaign for Green Britain

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By Christopher Appleby
15 Feb 2021
Dear Rishi
Dale Vince, Dear Rishi

This week, we’ve launched a major new campaign with the Daily Express to get the people of Britain to join our Green Britain Revolution.

We can create thousands of new jobs, reduce pollution, and bring back the wildlife and nature that’s been in decline for the past 100 years. All we need to do is focus on three key areas – energy, transport and food.

As the world’s first green energy company, we know that we already have the knowledge and the technology to make a green Britain a reality – but to make it happen we need to take the brakes off the green economy.


Zero4Zero is our Founder, Dale Vince’s, direct call to Rishi Sunak and the government, to cut taxes on the things that will help green up our country, to start levelling the playing field.

Here’s the letter, printed in the Daily Express:

Dear Rishi,

We need you, perhaps as much as we need anyone… to join our campaign for a Green Britain.

The three big areas of life we need to tackle are Energy, Transport and Food. And your government has a vital role to play.

You hold the big levers: tax, subsidies and regulations. You set the playing field and right now it’s skewed in the wrong direction.

As Chancellor you’ll be familiar with the idea of a green economy.

It is fundamental to our future not least hitting our zero carbon targets. And I’m sure you’re watching the emerging impacts of Brexit closely. This is where there’s a great overlap of issues. There’s something you can do to boost the green economy directly as a result of Brexit.

I’ll tell you how: take VAT off the things that help us green up our country.

For example, at home we pay VAT of 20 per cent for solar panels but VAT of only 5 per cent to burn coal.

Electric cars (zero carbon) have the same VAT rate as cars that burn petrol or diesel (high carbon) – cars that also cause air pollution that kills 40,000 of us a year and cost the NHS billions in health costs. Does that make sense?

Red meat, the highest carbon food, has zero per cent VAT, while some plant-based foods (low carbon) have 20 per cent.

These are anomalies that you inherited, I understand that – but you don’t have to keep them.

Other countries are showing the way forward: Norway has zero VAT on electric cars and they make up well over 50 per cent of new car sales in that country now. In the UK the figure is 10 per cent.

Until now we’ve been told that Britain was not free to set its own VAT rates because of our EU membership. But that doesn’t apply anymore, obviously.

Let’s have a Brexit boost for the green economy. Why not?

We’ve just launched a campaign for VAT to be set to zero on anything that help us get to zero carbon as a country.

We call it zero4zero.

I know you like snappily named campaigns – Eat Out to Help Out was a neat name. So how about Charge Nowt to Help Out?

I’d be happy to collaborate with your team if that would be helpful.

As a green entrepreneur and long-term environmentalist, I know where the bodies are buried...

Read more about the campaign in Dale Vince’s Facebook post.

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