Defra Outlines Role Of New Resource Minister

Rory-Stewart-DefraThe Department for Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) has outlined the role of Rory Stewart MP, three weeks after Prime Minister David Cameron reshuffled Cabinet positions following a Conservative win in the General Election 2015. 

Rory Stewart MP was appointed Parliamentary Under Secretary of State at Defra, replacing Lib Dem, Dan Rogerson.

It was also announced that Lord de Mauley was axed from his role as under-secretary of state for natural environment and science at the Department, with the number of politicians in the being confirmed as reduced from four to three.

This move cast doubt on whether Stewart would take up Rogerson’s mantle as Resources Minister, as it was announced that de Mauley’s responsibilities would be shared between the remaining three; including Liz Truss and minister of state, George Eustice.

Defra has today (3 June) has clarified Stewart’s role as Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Environment and Rural Affairs, whose responsibilities include:

  • natural environment
  • floods and water
  • resource and environmental management
  • rural affairs
  • lead responsibility for the Environment Agency, Natural England and the Forestry Commission deputy for the Secretary of State on Environment Council.

Stewart’s work history includes a stint in the army, before serving in the diplomatic service, running a charity in Afghanistan, and teaching at Harvard University.

He was selected in an open primary to be the Conservative candidate for the Penrith and The Border constituency, and was elected in May 2010.

He has been a member of the UK parliament’s Foreign Affairs Select Committee, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary group on Local Democracy, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Mountain Rescue, and Treasurer of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Upland Farming.

The resources and waste management industry has already set out what it believes should be the priorities of the Conservative Government during its term.

Among them, Resources & Waste UK last week published its manifesto, urging government to focus on six key areas of the industry:

  • Supporting and improving waste collection and recycling performance
  • Improving the climate for investment in circular economy infrastructure to deliver sustainable growth and jobs
  • Boosting domestic UK demand and markets for recycled materials
  • Creating the right regulatory balance between hitting waste criminals hard and encouraging legitimate businesses in the industry
  • Delivering coherent resources and waste policy across Governmental departments and between the four UK Governments
  • Engaging positively in policy development for resources and wastes at a European level

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