Greens call for rail fare freeze as Government announces below inflationary fare rise

15 August 2023

Following the government announcing it plans to increase rail fares by less than the rate of inflation and will delay fare increases until March 2024, Green Party co-leader Adrian Ramsay has called on the government to go further and freeze rail fares for at least the next year [1].

Contrasting year on year rail fare rises with the freeze in fuel duty for drivers and cuts to air passenger duty for domestic flights, Ramsay has urged the government to ensure that rail passengers are not penalised for using a more sustainable form of transport.

Adrian Ramsay said:

“This government is moving in completely the wrong direction. Fuel duty has been frozen since 2011, while air passenger duty cuts this year will be a disaster for the climate crisis by encouraging people to fly more. 

“This is despite the fact UK rail passengers are already paying more to travel by train [2] than flying and are faced with some of the most expensive tickets in Europe.  

“Emissions from transport are higher than for any other sector of the economy. If the UK is to meet its climate commitments then we need more people choosing trains over cars and planes, and we need more commuters opting for public transport and active travel to get to work. 

“Making train travel more expensive, while closing rail ticket offices that support travellers to get the best deal, would underscore the government’s contempt for climate action and the travelling public.

“Pushing up prices at all would make it harder for hard-pressed travellers to make the right decision for pocket and planet.

“That is why I am urging the government to come forward with a plan which will freeze rail fares. This would help address the cost of living crisis while helping to tackle the climate emergency.

“The Green alternative to the continued rundown of our railways is clear – make train travel affordable, safe and easy.

“That means bringing the whole rail system into public ownership, making sure it is always cheaper than the equivalent route by air or road, and encouraging more freight onto rail.

“That’s a win-win for the public and tackling the climate crisis.”


1. The rise in rail fares each January is usually based on the annual increase in Retail Price Index (RPI) measured the previous July. The price cap is usually announced by the Government each December. The government has indicated that next year’s rise will be below inflation and any increase will also be delayed until March 2024. However, the Green Party believe there should be a fare freeze. Next year’s English rail fares rise will be below inflation, says Government

2. Recent research suggests train travel is 35% more expensive than flying, despite the fact that plane journeys on average emit twice the C02 on average (118% more) compared to travelling by train, while fuel duty is frozen 


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Greens call for Inglorious 12th to be cancelled after avian influenza discovery

11 August 2023

The Green Party has called for grouse shooting season which is due to begin tomorrow (August 12), on what is known as the Inglorious 12th, to be cancelled following reports of avian influenza in red grouse in Scotland [1].

Green peer Natalie Bennett has called for all shooting activity to stop and for the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) to investigate how prevalent Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza is among birds on grouse moors.

Bennett said:

“We have seen reports today that Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza, the disease that is cutting such a swathe through our wild bird populations, has just been found in red grouse in Scotland.

“Grouse moors, with their maximum annual population, are a bio-disaster waiting to happen tomorrow when the shooting season opens.

“It’s extremely concerning that, as things stand, tomorrow will see people walking and driving all over the moors, with their shotguns at the ready, about to pick up at least some of those lead-laced carcasses and spread them around the country.

“How, even given the prominent position of grouse moor owners and shooters in our corridors of power, can this biorisk be accepted?

“All shooting due to take place must be halted while this risk is fully investigated to ensure the safety of both wildlife and people across the country.”




For more information or to arrange an interview contact the press office on or call 0203 691 9401

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Villiers Shell shareholding shows government failing to tackle climate crisis

11 August 2023

Reacting to the revelation that former Environment Secretary Theresa Villiers had a substantial shareholding in oil giant Shell during her time in the Cabinet [1], Green co-leader Adrian Ramsay said:

“Of course it’s unacceptable that the former Secretary of State didn’t register the shares when her holding increased in value. However, what was the person in government with responsibility to deliver its key environment policies – including moving us away from fossil fuels – doing with shares in Shell at all?

“You have to question how serious the Conservatives are in tackling the climate crisis when the Cabinet contains people deriving financial benefit from fossil fuel company shares of any value.

“We need representatives in Parliament focussed on freeing us from our dependence on oil and gas which is destroying our planet and instead investing in the energy sources of the future – wind, sun and water.

“Investing in renewable energy now will create sustainable green jobs and support workers in the oil and gas industry to transfer their skills and experiences to the energy sources of the future.”



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Greens call for “Welcome Refugees Week” as Tories announce further clamp down on asylum seekers

7 August 2023

In response to the government’s so-called “small boats week,” the Green party has called instead for a “Welcome Refugees Week”. As 500 asylum seekers are set to be housed on a barge off the Dorset coast and the government announces steep increases in fines for landlords and employers who house and give work to asylum seekers [1], Benali Hamdache, Green Party spokesperson on Migration and Refugees, said: 

“No barge is a suitable home for refugees. Most people who reach our shores and claim asylum are doing so completely legitimately due to fleeing war, persecution, discrimination or climate breakdown. The vast majority are desperate people who need to be met with compassion. Housing them in a barge is to treat them as prisoners and is heartless. 

“The Green Party would open safe and legal routes for asylum seekers. With such routes, many refugees would not be forced into making a dangerous crossing of the English Channel.

“We want this week and every week to be “Welcome Refugees Week.” Rather than a heavy-handed approach on landlords and employers who house and give work to asylum seekers, Greens would enable families seeking protection to be accommodated in a house or flat and for single applicants to have their own room if in shared accommodation. We would also allow applicants of working age to be allowed to take up employment. This is not only the humane approach, it also acknowledges the economic and cultural benefits refugees bring to communities across the UK.”



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Green Party announces Earth Overshoot action plan

2 August 2023

Today marks Earth Overshoot Day, the date when humanity’s demand for ecological resources and services in a given year exceeds what Earth can regenerate in that year. However, the UK’s overshoot day has already passed – it fell on19th May [1]. In a week when the government has made a series of measures which will make the overshoot even worse, the Green Party has launched an ‘Earth Overshoot Day action plan’ to help move the UK date as late as possible.


Co-leader Carla Denyer said:


“Earth Overshoot Day is an important reminder that as a globe and as a nation we are currently living beyond the environmental limits of our one precious planet. It falls in a week when the government seems hellbent on overshoot. Maxing out on climate destruction by issuing new licences for oil and gas drilling; failing to tackle the climate crisis in tandem with the cost of living crisis through measures like home insulation; and fueling culture wars over measures which seek to make our neighbourhoods safer and healthier. 


“It is important we recognise the hugely unequal way in which the world’s resources are consumed, with multi-billion pound corporations and a small number of individuals bearing the largest responsibility for overshoot. This is why Greens would increase taxes on fossil fuel polluters and the super-rich to address inequality and fund the green transition.


“We have set out three key areas – energy, housing and transport – where if policies for a fairer, greener country were implemented, we could help move the date of Earth Overshoot Day as we move faster towards living within the environmental limits of our one planet.” 


Green Party Earth Overshoot action plan


If we are to move the UK’s Overshoot date from its current date of May 19 – there are three key policy areas that we need to address:



  • No new oil and gas exploration. Ever. This follows the science. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, the International Energy Agency and the United Nations say that there can be no new fossil fuel projects if there is to be any chance of keeping global temperature rises under 1.5 degrees.

  • Revoke all licences for oil and gas drilling in the North Sea. We challenge Labour to commit to the same.

  • A huge boost for renewable energy by investing in renewable energy generation, including onshore wind and in the infrastructure needed for powering up the country with green electricity.



  • Launch a nationwide home insulation programme to cut both carbon emissions and household energy bills, tackling the climate emergency and cost of living crisis in tandem.

  • Adopt new building standards that ensure all new homes are built to passivhaus or similar standards, and all new homes are fitted with solar panels and heat pumps as standard where possible. 

  • We need the right homes in the right place at the right price. Expensive, energy-intensive homes built on greenfield sites with high car-dependency will result in high carbon lifestyles. We need affordable homes, built largely on brownfield sites close to where people work, shop and engage in social activities.    



The Tories have embarked on a culture war pitting ‘motorists’ against everyone else. But most of us use a variety of ways to get about – walking, cycling, public transport and cars. We all want clean air to breathe, safe routes to walk and wheel, and reliable and affordable public transport. Greens would:

  • Support schemes which make streets safer for walking and wheeling – this has been demonstrated to encourage more people to switch from cars to cleaner and more active forms of transport. 

  • Introduce a ‘£1 fare to take you there’ for all single journeys on buses, as well as free bus travel for under 22 year-olds. And investment in buses and bus routes to serve more communities more frequently.

  • Introduce a frequent flyer levy, where those taking the most flights pay the highest tax. The majority of people take one or fewer flights in any given year. We don’t think the tax burden should fall on them but instead on the 15% of the population who take 70% of flights.    






Country Overshoot Days 2023 – Earth Overshoot Day

For more information or to arrange an interview contact the press office on or call 0203 691 9401

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