Tory peers could stop Goves plan to relax pollution rules in England
A Tory rebellion in the House of Lords could thwart Michael Goves plans to rip up pollution laws for housebuilders in England.
The former minister Zac Goldsmith, who recently quit the government over what he termed Rishi Sunaks apathy over the environment, and Sir John Randall, a former environmental adviser to No 10, have signed an amendment laid by the Duke of Wellington that would nullify the governments plans.
Last week, Gove and the environment secretary, Thrse Coffey, announced plans to amend the levelling up bill, which would undo EU-derived rules stopping housebuilders from polluting sensitive areas. It would essentially force planning officials to pretend sewage pollution from new developments does not exist when considering applications for sensitive areas such as the Norfolk Broads and Lake District.
The current rules aim to sustain nutrient neutrality, meaning no more nutrient pollution such as nitrates and phosphates enter important habitats in sewage from new housing. These nutrients choke rivers, filling them with algae and killing the life within.