IT WAS a pleasure at the end of last week to see the Pantry Partnership finally installed in its new home in Victoria Park.

I first met Fiona Ollerhead when the organisation was just a dream.

It is wonderful to see it come to fruition and I salute the creative way she saw an opportunity to take food that was going to go to waste and, through the creative energy and skill of volunteers, turn it into nutritious and affordable meals for vulnerable people in the community.

The Pantry Partnership is a fantastic example of co-operation between business, volunteers and Salisbury City Council, which helped it to secure premises.

Of course, the Pantry Partnership’s operating model also helps to tackle waste locally – an aim dear to the hearts of many local people.

I am often challenged on what I am personally doing in Parliament to advance the government’s climate change agenda.

I am pleased to report that I have spent much of this week working on Green Finance. As part of my remit as City Minister, I have been involved over the past year in promoting ways the City of London can continue to develop the skills and expertise to finance a low carbon economy.

Green investment also plays a key role in funding the development of technological advances in renewables that will ultimately mean that clean energy sources can meet more of our needs with greater efficiency and at ever more affordable prices.

The government will shortly be publishing its Green Finance Strategy. Combining economic growth with record carbon reductions amongst the G7 nations is the way forward and I consider it a vital part of my role to make sure the City of London can continue to lead the world in green finance.

At the time of writing, cabinet discussions are continuing about a way forward to deliver Brexit. This continues to be challenging proposition, given the parliamentary arithmetic. I realise that, for many people (me included!) , a conclusion cannot come soon enough.


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