MP Matt Western has called on the prime minster to minimise destruction caused by HS2 and pump greater investment into public transport in Warwickshire.
The Warwick and Leamington MP Matt Western has urged Boris Johnson to reduce the level of environmental damage – including cutting down of ancient woodlands – linked to the high speed rail line, in light of the global climate emergency.
It follows the controversial project being approved on Tuesday (February 11) following a review.
But despite its budget nearly doubling to £106billion and the completion date for the first stage pushed back from 2026 to between 2028 to 2031, it was given the green light.
Mr Western said the project needed to look closer at how it could protect the countryside. It follows a visit to sites in Cubbington, Crackley Woods and Offchurch where campaigners have been camped out in protest at the line.
He said: “After visiting the three campsites which fall just outside of my constituency, it is clear residents feel strongly about protecting wonderful natural assets that help us in our fight against climate change.
“Government must now seriously work to minimise the environmental destruction from HS2.”
Along with the HS2 announcement, the prime minister also revealed £5billion would be invested in zero carbon buses and 250 miles of cycle routes.
But Mr Western said the investment did not go far enough.
He told the Observer: “Government has underfunded public transport for a decade. These limited improvements simply don’t go far enough. I’m pressing for the ‘Chiltern line’ from Birmingham to London to be upgraded and for more cycle routes and electric buses to be installed, especially in Warwick and Leamington. This is where government should be investing.”