Gus Hoyt of Power 2010 discusses future environmental policy under a coalition government.A Hung Parliament is the English way of describing a coalition government; a practice that is perfectly normal in most developed and fledgling democracies the world over. With the innate confrontational style of politics the notions of compromise and more centralist policy adoption seem alien and to be wary of. The idea that we now have a slightly diluted Conservative government must not draw attention away from the fact that right wing agendas are now top of the list once again. These traditionally focus on less public spending, lower taxes, less regulation and an innate reliance on the market and the individual. Now has never been a more important time for strong environmental policies. As David Norman (WWF) said, “…global greenhouse gasses must peak during this Parliament…to prevent serious, irreversible consequences. All parties say they are committed; now what we need is action.” The Coalition policies are tempting but how much weight do they carry? Despite the Lib Dem’s excellent pre-election promises (40% reduction in CO2 by 2020 and Nuclear-free, Renewable led power generation) it looks like the Conservative’s policies lead the agenda. The market will decide the nuclear and wind-farm debate and Carbon Capture and Storage (CCS; a technology still in the theoretical stages) allows the construction of new coal fired stations. UK houses (responsible for 40% of our annual CO2 emissions) are to be specifically targeted. The impetus for refurbishment will be on the home owner, with healthy financial incentives for all improvements from micro generation to double glazing. In a time of recession this does seem to be too little too late. No mention has been mentioned for foreign aid and new Carbon Reduction plans will have to be on British soil. This will not provide the much needed aid for the creation of Carbon Free economies in the ever growing “developing world”. With the order of the day being spending cuts, this essential (and some argue morally required) investment looks less likely of seeing fruition. Peak Oil has similarly been completely ignored yet again, though a committee is to look into the infrastructure required for the national use of electric cars. High speed rail links are likewise to be investigated. The much trumpeted cessation of planning at Heathrow and other major airlines is nothing more than the continuation of the previous parliament. There will be a new tax on every flight, though the airline’s emissions are still not to be included in our national quotas. Green-washing has never been so blatant. Though this might be a call of doom and gloom, but there is a shining light at the end of the tunnel. Every vote in Parliament is more important now than ever before. Individual MPs could now wield enormous power. Environmental action groups have the most important years of their lives ahead of them. It really is a time of change, but it is unlikely to be initiated by Central Government. Referenda could be used to decide difficult policies. Individuals and the groups they are involved in could hold the future directly in their hands.