Opinion – Ed Miliband: Leaving EU not in Britain’s interest | EurActiv – Rodney Willett

This is, of course, one of the areas where I know that I disagree with Dr Alf’s viewpoint.

We should leave the EU, despite the fact that there are sectors of our economy that would, without a doubt, suffer should we do so. I say that because there are two counter arguments that I think hold water.

1. Nobody has been able to calculate how much damage would be done to the UK’s economy following Brexit – and that would depend on how Brexit is managed. We are as important to the economies of the rest of Europe, as they are to ours and nobody would want to rock any trade – except as a revenge and that would be triggered only if we just walked away.

2. Nobody has been able to calculate how much the UK economy would benefit without what many of my friends who run SMEs would describe as ‘the dead hand of the EU’.

Meanwhile, the EU is now full of political tensions any of which could, at almost any moment and very quickly slip out of control and cause untold problems even (without wishing to be alarmist) military aggression. I do not want to see the UK embroiled in the possible violent collapse of the EU.

Mind you, better still would be a renewed EU that returned to its fundamentals: a trading relationship in harmony with all the people of the member states and fleet of foot in order to avoid the worst of the problems that life will continue to throw at it – and to grab any opportunities that happen along the way. I tend to think that both Dr Alf and I would prefer to see a reformed EU.

Rodney Willett

Opinion – Air pollution will kill thousands in Europe, EEA warns | EurActiv – John Gelmini

The solution to air pollution is to be found in Salzburg, Austria, where the entire City is free of cars, and where an efficient park and walk system plus proper policing keeps the place safe.

London needs a system of trams, electric taxis and a modern tube system, plus out of city park and rides. Similarly, we need Boris Island, as Heathrow Airport creates antimony poisoning and thus contributes to dementia, as is the case under the Luton, Gatwick and Stansted flight paths, where antimony from aircraft fuel adds to the incidence of dementia, and brings forward the day when the NHS and the Adult Social Care systems implode financially.

Lorries delivering things to London need to be fitted with scrubbers to eliminate diesel particulates and do so only at night when commuters are not there and all roads into and out of London need to be lined with trees to increase oxygen content.

As Dr Alf knows, this will not happen because the costs of these measures are treated separately by civil servants and blinkered town hall apparachiks who will do nothing until the costs of doing nothing are outweighed by the benefits of taking decisive action.

John Gelmini