Environment at the heart of the Queen’s Speech

State Opening of Parliament showcased speech with many reforms for the environment

Pathway to COP26 report

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The Queen has delivered her speech to open this session of Parliament unveiling a new programme of legislation, which the government says will ‘level up’ opportunities across the country.

A new package for the environment

In her first official public appearance since the death of her husband Prince Philip last month, the Queen said: “My government will invest in new green industries to create jobs, while protecting the environment.”

The Queen’s Speech contained more than 25 bills and proposed pieces of legislation.

Her Majesty added: “The United Kingdom is committed to achieving net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 and will continue to lead the way internationally by hosting the COP26 Summit in Glasgow.”

The Environment Bill

Speaking about the much-delayed Environment Bill, which was first launched in July 2018, she continued the new legislation will set binding environmental targets.

These include commitments to restoring nature and biodiversity, tackling air pollution and cutting plastic use.

An independent Office for Environmental Protection will also be created.

Highest standards of animal welfare

The Queen also said legislation will be brought forward to ensure the UK has the highest standards of animal welfare.

The government had previously confirmed that it will pass the Environment Bill in the run-up to the international COP26 Climate Change Summit in Glasgow later this year.

Members of the House of Commons are expected to debate the planned legislative programme for several days.

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