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Boris Johnson Goes Green With Cash for Electric Cars and Fusion

Robert Hutton

(Bloomberg) -- Boris Johnson’s Conservative Party will pledge funding for electric cars, fusion power and new green spaces at its conference next week, in the latest sign of how British political parties are fighting for environmentally friendly votes.

The Conservative annual conference, which kicks of in Manchester, North West England, on Sunday, is likely to be dominated by Brexit. But the party is keen to talk about other things as well. On Saturday, it announced 1 billion pounds ($1.2 billion) of investment in electric vehicles, to be spent over an unspecified period, and 50 million pounds a year for four years toward the development of a fusion reactor, which the government says it wants to be running by 2040. There’s also money for new forests and extra regulations for new homes to make them more energy-efficient.

“Addressing climate change is a top priority for the Conservative Party, and today’s announcements will not only help us reach our Net Zero 2050 target, but will benefit communities and households -- and improve wildlife and well-being -- while doing so,” Business Secretary Andrea Leadsom said in a statement. “The Conservatives are doing this properly: creating hundreds of thousands of low carbon jobs and growing our economy while successfully reducing emissions.”

The main opposition Labour Party voted at its conference to create a path toward “net-zero” carbon emissions by 2030. Though that doesn’t necessarily mean it will be Labour policy at the next election, it does show what the party’s activists want.

To contact the reporter on this story: Robert Hutton in London at rhutton1@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Tim Ross at tross54@bloomberg.net, Robert Jameson

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