Ripping up regulations will lead to a future of substandard homes with cramped rooms and small windows

David Cameron was at the centre of a political storm in November, when an unnamed source suggested that the PM regularly marches around Number 10 saying: “We have got to get rid of all this green crap” – a statement that Downing Street was quick to say it “did not recognise”.

But it might recognise it today, after Cameron's speech to the Federation of Small Businesses, which could have had “getting rid of the green crap” as its tagline, followed by “what else can we throw on the red tape bonfire while we're at it?”


The news has been greeted with fury by the UK Green Building Council. “The Prime Minister’s boasts of ‘slashing 80,000 pages’ of environmental guidance is utterly reprehensible,” said UK-GBC chief executive Paul King. “It is the same poisonous political rhetoric from Number 10, devaluing environmental regulation in a slash-and-burn manner. These words are not only damaging and irresponsible, but misrepresent the wishes of so many modern businesses, both large and small.”

The announcement is the latest product of Cameron's “Red Tape Challenge”, a bizarre crowd-sourced exercise in deciding which regulations should be kicked out, Big Brother-style, along with his introduction of scorecards to show quite how many rules his government has managed to banish. It will only be when sifting through the ashes of the great policy bonfire, having presided over an era of the shoddiest house construction the UK has ever seen, that he might realise how useful some of that “green crap” was.