Clean Air (Human Rights) Bill [HL]: HL Bill 5 of 2022-23

On 8 July 2022, the second reading of the Clean Air (Human Rights) Bill [HL] is scheduled to take place. This bill seeks to improve air quality in England and Wales. It would establish a human right to clean air and would require the government to limit the concentration of pollutants in the air in accordance with World Health Organization guidelines and scientific evidence.

Clean Air (Human Rights) Bill [HL]: HL Bill 5 of 2022-23

Standards in public life and the democratic process

Members of both Houses of Parliament are expected to abide by the seven principles of public life, also known as the Nolan Principles, and to the principles and rules set out in each House’s code of conduct. In addition, ministers are expected to follow the ministerial code. Declines in public trust in government and politicians often follow episodes of perceived declines in standards, such as after the 2009 media coverage of politicians’ expenses.

Standards in public life and the democratic process

Queen’s Speech 2022: Transport

The next Queen’s Speech, in which the Government will set out its legislative programme for the new parliamentary session, will be delivered on 10 May 2022. The speech is expected to include several measures concerning transport. These include: strengthening the regulation of payment of seafarers; continuing with the development of high speed rail; establishing a new rail body; regulating the sale of e-scooters; and providing for driverless cars.

Queen’s Speech 2022: Transport
  • In Focus

    Education: multi-academy trusts

    An education white paper published on 28 March 2022 set out the Government’s ambition for all schools to be part of a multi-academy trust by 2030. This policy has been criticised by some, who argue that multi-academy trusts are not more effective or efficient than other types of school structure.

  • In Focus

    Zimbabwe: conduct ahead of 26 March 2022 elections

    Elections for some parliamentary and local government seats in Zimbabwe took place on 26 March 2022. Journalists and members of the Citizens Coalition for Change opposition party accused members of the ruling party of political violence before the poll. Activists and the opposition also said that there were irregularities with the voting register.

  • In Focus

    Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (Safeguarding and Road Safety) Bill

    On 4 March 2022, the House of Lords is due to debate the second reading of the Taxis and Private Hire Vehicles (Safeguarding and Road Safety) Bill. The bill would oblige taxi and private hire vehicle licensing authorities to submit information about refusals, suspensions and revocations of driver licences to a national database. Licensing authorities would also have to check the database before making licensing decisions.

  • Research Briefing

    Nuclear Energy (Financing) Bill

    The Nuclear Energy (Financing) Bill is a government bill which completed all its stages in the House of Commons on 10 January 2022. It would introduce the regulated asset base (RAB) as a way of financing new nuclear power stations. Under a RAB, an economic regulator is given the power to levy a charge on consumers, the proceeds of which go towards financing the new infrastructure. At the time of writing, a date for second reading in the House of Lords has not been set.

  • In Focus

    Nuclear power in the UK

    The House of Lords is due to debate a motion moved by Lord Howell of Guildford (Conservative) that “this House takes note of the role of civil nuclear power in meeting the United Kingdom’s (1) electricity needs, and (2) energy security”. This article gives an overview of nuclear power in the UK. It looks at issues such as its role in meeting carbon reduction targets, safety and the disposal of radioactive waste.

  • In Focus

    Detention of Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe

    British-Iranian dual national Nazanin Zaghari-Ratcliffe has been detained in Iran since 2016. The UK Government has called her detention arbitrary and has lobbied the Iranian Government for her release. Her husband, Richard Ratcliffe, and her MP, Tulip Siddiq, have called on the Government to do more to secure her freedom.

  • In Focus

    Urban water and sanitation in developing countries: impact of climate change

    Many people around the world do not have access to safe and adequate drinking water and sanitation facilities. Increasingly extreme weather patterns, resulting in both more droughts and more floods, are predicted to place more stress on water and sanitation services. This article looks at access to water and sanitation in developing countries, why it matters and what the UK Government is doing in this area.

  • In Focus

    Community care for people with learning disabilities and/or autism

    Since 2012, successive governments have set targets to reduce the number of people with learning disabilities and/or autism in inpatient settings, in favour of being cared for in the community. However, though progress has been made, to date these targets have not been achieved. Leading in turn to calls for further action and investment, and for funding incentives to ensure those with learning disabilities and/or autism are cared for in the most appropriate settings.

  • In Focus

    Solent ferry services: regret motion

    Successive MPs for the Isle of Wight have argued that ferry services between the island and the mainland are not competitive enough. A statutory instrument introduced in response to Covid-19 suspended some elements of competition law in relation to ferry services across the Solent. A motion due to be moved in the House of Lords expresses regret that the order revoking this suspension does not address competition issues.

  • In Focus

    Meeting the demand for nurses: looking abroad?

    The UK has significant unmet demand for nurses. This country has a history of recruiting nurses from overseas, and the Government aims to encourage more nurses trained abroad to come to work in the UK. However, the Government also takes into account ethical considerations relating to the recruitment of nurses from countries which themselves have a shortage of healthcare staff.

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