LONDON – England – Sovereign wealth funds to be allowed to lease trees in England and Wales, says prime minister, David Cameron.
David Cameron will clear the way for a multibillion-pound full privatisation of Britain’s trees as he announces plans to allow countries like China to lease trees in the British countryside.
“We’re even considering privatising the grass and maybe the air,” Mr Cameron told a parliamentary committee on privatisation.
In the PM’s most eye-catching proposal to date, he will announce that the Treasury and Environment Agency are to carry out a feasibility study looking at using private-sector funds to lease out trees and with the money raised, build thousands more car parks over the countryside.
“By privatising all of the trees and grass in the UK, we will thus be able to concrete over them and build more car parks, Tesco superstores and sunbed parlours,” Cameron added.
But Cameron, who is fully supported by the chancellor, will make clear that the poor state of Britain’s public trees and grassy knolls means that bold steps must be taken.
If you own a tree in your back garden or you walk through a forest full of trees on public land, you won’t own it anymore because the Chinese or whoever else pays for it will own it. But if the tree is chopped down the government will have the right to concrete over your back garden or the forest and make it into a carpark or social housing.
In a 2010 report scheduled by the NM Rothschild bank, it suggested that privatising all the trees and grass in England and Wales could raise as much as £100bn.
The Coalition government wants to thus go ahead with the mass privatisation of Britain’s trees and grass, and have implemented all of the recommendations in the Rothschild report by next year.