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Introducing Theresa Villiers – our new Environment Secretary

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In Boris Johnson’s cabinet re-shuffle last week, Theresa Villiers replaces Michael Gove as Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

So who is she?

Theresa Villiers was born in 1968 and has been Conservative MP for Chipping Barnet for four years.

She studied at Bristol and Oxford University and worked as a barrister before turning to politics.

In 2005, Villiers was asked to join David Cameron’s shadow cabinet after just seven months in the UK Parliament, as Shadow Chief Secretary to the Treasury. In 2007 she became Shadow Secretary of State for Transport.

Under the Coalition government in 2010, she was appointed to the Privy Council and became Minister of State for Transport.

Villiers was appointed to the Cabinet as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland in 2012 where she worked until 2016.

Villiers was one of the six cabinet ministers who came out in support of Brexit and resigned from her role in the cabinet post referendum because Theresa May offered her a post which was “not one which I felt I could take on”

What are her views on the environment?

Villiers is pro-fracking and voted against a bill to set a target for the amount of carbon dioxide emissions and other greenhouse gases the UK produced.

She has also spoken out against the new Prime Minister’s favoured proposal for a new London airport to be built in the Thames Estuary and alternative expansion plans for Gatwick and Stansted airports, arguing that airlines should make greater use of the UK’s regional airports.

She launched a petition to save the fields at Whalebones in her suburban constituency in High Barnet, in order to protect an area of woods and farmland from development.

Following an agreement between the Executors of the deceased owner’s will and developers, there is now a plan to build over 150 flats and houses on the fields, which Villiers opposes.

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