Connect with us

Economy

Campaigners Claim New Boundaries Will ‘Skew Our Democracy’

Published

on

times-sqaure-crowd-by-divya-thakur-via-flikr

The Electoral Reform Society has stated that constituency boundaries should be drawn on the basis of population rather than an incomplete electoral register.

 On the day that the Boundary Commission released its provisional proposals for redrawing constituencies, the ERS has found that both London and the South East are missing two constituencies each as a result of over 2 million registered voters not being counted.

Seats in Boundary Commission 2018 review (under December 2015 register)

Seats if review had used June 2016 register

Change

Total

600

600

0

England

501

502

1

Scotland

53

53

0

Wales

29

29

0

Northern Ireland

17

16

-1

Eastern

57

56

-1

East Midlands

44

43

-1

London

68

70

2

North East

25

25

0

North West

68

67

-1

South East 

83

85

2

South West

53

53

0

West Midlands

53

53

0

Yorkshire and the Humber

50

50

0

Source: Electoral Reform Society analysis of Electoral Commission data 

Looking at the ten areas where there has been the biggest increase in the electoral register between December 2015 and June 2016, five are in London (with four of these in the top five).

Local Counting Area

Provisional Referendum Electorate

1 December 2015 Parliamentary Electorate

% Change from December 2015

Absolute Change

Lewisham

197,514

166,489

18.6%

31025

Lambeth

210,766

187,581

12.4%

23185

Camden

145,328

129,475

12.2%

15853

Tower Hamlets

167,789

150,351

11.6%

17438

Cambridge

80,099

72,457

10.5%

7642

Hackney

163,284

147,877

10.4%

15407

Lincoln

63,336

57,397

10.3%

5939

Oxford

97,309

88,382

10.1%

8927

Slough

87,868

79,826

10.1%

8042

Canterbury

109,399

99,849

9.6%

9550

 Source: Electoral Reform Society analysis of Electoral Commission data

Commenting on the Boundary Commission’s provisional proposals for redrawing constituencies, Katie Ghose, Chief Executive of the Electoral Reform Society, said:

“The fact that this boundary review is being conducted on the basis of registered electors, rather than the actual population, risks skewing our democracy.

“Areas with the lowest levels of registration are often those that already have the least voice in politics. Young people, some ethnic minority groups and those in the private rented sector are all less likely to register to vote than others. That makes many of them effectively cut out of the new political map.

“What’s more, the review is being undertaken on the basis of a register that’s nearly a year out of date, excluding over two million people who signed up between December and June. That means some regions are two seats short of what they are owed.

It would be much fairer to draw boundaries based on eligible population rather than an incomplete electoral register.

‘Equalising’ constituencies

“Fair political boundaries are crucial to ensuring people are properly represented in Parliament. But we shouldn’t tear apart close-knit areas in a rush to ‘equalise’ numbers.

“The rigid 5% threshold – the maximum difference in size between constituencies – poses the prospect of huge disruption every five years through sparking a boundary review for every election. And it’s far too inflexible to take into account natural borders between different communities.”

A smaller commons – but a larger Lords

“Cutting the number of MPs is the wrong priority. We have a growing unelected House and a shrinking elected one. The House of Lords is a super-sized second chamber – second only to China – and shockingly poor value for money. Surely it would be more democratic to address the crisis in the House of Lords than to cut the number of elected MPs.

Power imbalance

“If you reduce the number of MPs in Parliament without reducing the number of ministers, you increase the power of the executive and make it more difficult to challenge the government. That will reduce the ability for Parliament to do its job of holding the Government to account.”

Making votes count

“The government talks about the need to ‘make every vote count’ through these changes. Yet the best way to do that – the elephant in the room – is the need for a proportional and fair voting system.

“If the government really cares about making votes matter, they should concentrate on reforming the voting system.”

Economy

A Good Look At How Homes Will Become More Energy Efficient Soon

Published

on

By

energy efficient homes

Everyone always talks about ways they can save energy at home, but the tactics are old school. They’re only tweaking the way they do things at the moment. Sealing holes in your home isn’t exactly the next scientific breakthrough we’ve been waiting for.

There is some good news because technology is progressing quickly. Some tactics might not be brand new, but they’re becoming more popular. Here are a few things you should expect to see in homes all around the country within a few years.

1. The Rise Of Smart Windows

When you look at a window right now it’s just a pane of glass. In the future they’ll be controlled by microprocessors and sensors. They’ll change depending on the specific weather conditions directly outside.

If the sun disappears the shade will automatically adjust to let in more light. The exact opposite will happen when it’s sunny. These energy efficient windows will save everyone a huge amount of money.

2. A Better Way To Cool Roofs

If you wanted to cool a roof down today you would coat it with a material full of specialized pigments. This would allow roofs to deflect the sun and they’d absorb less heat in the process too.

Soon we’ll see the same thing being done, but it will be four times more effective. Roofs will never get too hot again. Anyone with a large roof is going to see a sharp decrease in their energy bills.

3. Low-E Windows Taking Over

It’s a mystery why these aren’t already extremely popular, but things are starting to change. Read low-E window replacement reviews and you’ll see everyone loves them because they’re extremely effective.

They’ll keep heat outside in summer or inside in winter. People don’t even have to buy new windows to enjoy the technology. All they’ll need is a low-E film to place over their current ones.

4. Magnets Will Cool Fridges

Refrigerators haven’t changed much in a very long time. They’re still using a vapor compression process that wastes energy while harming the environment. It won’t be long until they’ll be cooled using magnets instead.

The magnetocaloric effect is going to revolutionize cold food storage. The fluid these fridges are going to use will be water-based, which means the environment can rest easy and energy bills will drop.

5. Improving Our Current LEDs

Everyone who spent a lot of money on energy must have been very happy when LEDs became mainstream. Incandescent light bulbs belong in museums today because the new tech cut costs by up to 85 percent.

That doesn’t mean someone isn’t always trying to improve on an already great invention. The amount of lumens LEDs produce per watt isn’t great, but we’ve already found a way to increase it by 25 percent.

Maybe Homes Will Look Different Too

Do you think we’ll come up with new styles of homes that will take off? Surely it’s not out of the question. Everything inside homes seems to be changing for the better with each passing year. It’s going to continue doing so thanks to amazing inventors.

ShutterStock – Stock photo ID: 613912244

Continue Reading

Economy

IEMA Urge Government’s Industrial Strategy Skills Overhaul To Adopt A “Long View Approach”

Published

on

IEMA, in response to the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, have welcomed the focus on technical skills and education to boost “competence and capability” of tomorrow’s workforce.

Policy experts at the world’s leading professional association of Environment and Sustainability professionals has today welcomed Prime Minister Teresa May’s confirmation that an overhaul of technical education and skills will form a central part of the Plan for Britain – but warns the strategy must be one for the long term.

Martin Baxter, Chief Policy Advisor at IEMA said this morning that the approach and predicted investment in building a stronger technical skills portfolio to boost the UK’s productivity and economic resilience is positive, and presents an opportunity to drive the UK’s skills profile and commitment to sustainability outside of the EU.

Commenting on the launch of the Government’s Industrial Strategy Green Paper, Baxter said today:

“Government must use the Industrial Strategy as an opportunity to accelerate the UK’s transition to a low-carbon, resource efficient economy – one that is flexible and agile and which gives a progressive outlook for the UK’s future outside the EU.

We welcome the focus on skills and education, as it is vital that tomorrow’s workforce has the competence and capability to innovate and compete globally in high-value manufacturing and leading technology.

There is a real opportunity with the Industrial Strategy, and forthcoming 25 year Environment Plan and Carbon Emissions Reduction Plan, to set long-term economic and environmental outcomes which set the conditions to unlock investment, enhance natural capital and provide employment and export opportunities for UK business.

We will ensure that the Environment and Sustainability profession makes a positive contribution in responding to the Green Paper.”

Continue Reading
Advertisement

Facebook

Trending