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Last Updated: Monday, 18 September 2006, 20:27 GMT 21:27 UK
Lib Dem call to tax patio heaters
Patio heaters
Patio heaters should be heavily taxed, said Mr Harwood
Heavy taxes should be slapped on everything from patio heaters to energy inefficient light bulbs, a Lib Dem environment spokesman has said.

Martin Horwood said the idea of taxing the most polluting cars should be extended to cover all environmentally unfriendly products.

He told a conference fringe meeting climate change was "a crisis just as serious as the Second World War".

And the Lib Dems should be leading other parties in fighting it.

Lib Dem leader Sir Menzies Campbell is facing a crunch vote on Tuesday over his green tax plans, including road tax of up to 2,000 on gas-guzzling sports cars and 4x4s and a new aviation tax.

But Mr Harwood told a New Statesman fringe meeting the party should not stop there.

"What about a tax on incandescent light bulbs? That would make people switch to energy efficient light bulbs.

"What about patio heaters? That is a luxury that can easily be taxed extremely heavily," he said.

Companies that use excess packaging should also face extra tax, he added, particularly if the packaging weighed more than the item it contained.

"We need to punish that kind of marketing behaviour, " he said.

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