Boris Johnson criticised after flying from Yorkshire to the North East for a General Election campaign visit

The Prime Minister has been criticised for taking a private jet on a 25-minute flight to Teesside.

Monday, 9th December 2019, 7:36 pm
Updated Tuesday, 10th December 2019, 12:55 pm
Prime Minister Boris Johnson takes questions during a visit to Fergusons Transport in Washington while on the General Election campaign trail. Picture: Stefan Rousseau/PA Wire

With polling day looming, Boris Johnson decided to spend some of his final days on the campaign trail in the marginal seats of the North East.

But the Prime Minister’s decision to board a 25-minute flight from Doncaster to Darlington has drawn heavy criticism from environmental groups and campaigners – especially given that there’s a 53-minute direct train service on the same route.

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One of the Conservative Party’s key pledges is to reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 “with investment in clean energy solutions and green infrastructure to reduce carbon emissions and pollution”.

Launching his environmental policies last month, Mr Johnson said: “There is nothing more conservative than protecting our environment and these measures sit alongside our world-leading commitment to net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.”

Air travel has been identified as the most carbon-intensive form of transport, with short haul domestic flights leaving the biggest carbon footprint.

And so the Prime Minister’s carbon-intensive choice of transport didn’t go unnoticed by the Labour candidate for Middlesbrough and Shadow Transport Secretary, Andy McDonald.

“Given that Johnson refused to take part in the leader’s debate on climate change, it comes as no surprise that he thinks it perfectly OK to take a private jet and pay no heed to the carbon emissions pumped out into the atmosphere,” said Mr McDonald.

“The world is facing a climate crisis but the Tories simply fail to take the issue seriously. As ever Johnson doesn’t think any of this applies to him.”

The Conservative Party has been approached for comment.