This week was a bit different. On Weds I was interviewed by a nice journalist from the Financial Times. He’d got my name through Head Office and local Foe as being a environmental campaigner who lives in Edgbaston constituency. Edgbaston is apparently a ‘swing’ ward when it comes to close elections so they wanted to do some case studies on what people think of Gordon Brown as chancellor and as potential Prime Minister. My interview was about my thoughts from a green perspective.
It was one of those things, where at first I thought, great, what an opportunity to get my views out there. Must say yes. A millisecond after saying yes though, reality sank in and I starting thinking what a heavy subject it is, how many people might read it, what if Gordon Brown reads it – aaaah, I generally weirded myself right out! So thought I’d better get my facts straight….
The main problem was I couldn’t actually think of many green things that Brown has done. I had to get digging. In the end I did find some positives: higher land fill taxes, the fuel tax escalator (later abandoned), the Stern Report, grants for some energy saving installations etc. But overall it’s not too impressive considering he’s had nine budgets to change things. I think it’s been a big missed opportunity. So I mentioned some of the not so good things and things that he’d have to do for me to take his green credentials seriously.
We chatted for about half an hour or so, and I’ve no idea how much or what will be printed. It will go out when the pre-budget report is launched. They want a mugshot which should be amusing. So far, not too scary then. Plus I have a PR friend who’s been trying to get their company in the FT for years with no success. I somehow managed it without even trying!