Boris Johnson ally Zac Goldsmith has been fired as environment minister and has been told he will no longer attend Liz Truss’ cabinet, it has emerged.
The conservative minister has been stripped of his brief animal welfare oversight at the Ministry of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), government sources confirm. TBEN.
Mr Goldsmith appeared to give Ms Truss a warning in a letter to Defra staff, saying the government needs to do “so much more to turn the tide,” Goldsmith said. the guardwho first reported on his resignation.
He is said to have written that he was “very sad” to leave after a three-year “whirlwind” as environment minister advocating action against climate change and better protection of animal welfare.
“After all, the UK is one of the world’s most nature-poor countries. But if Defra continues to get the support you need and deserve from the government, you can and will turn the tide,” he wrote.
Mr Goldsmith, appointed as a minister by Johnson in 2019, is expected to retain his ministerial role at the State Department, where he continues to have a role on the Pacific and the environment.
Animal welfare activists feared, however, that his abolition at Defra could mean lowering animal welfare concerns when it comes to post-Brexit trade deals.
Lorraine Platt of the Conservative Animal Welfare Foundation – which sponsors former Prime Minister Carrie Johnson’s wife – told the guard that she was disappointed by losing the role of Lord Goldsmith.
“Our government has always maintained that animal welfare standards will be maintained in all trade agreements, but it is vital that this is adhered to and that our farmers are not undermined by low welfare trade agreements,” she said.
Ms Platt added: “We have higher animal welfare standards here than many countries so they cannot compete… It is important to the public that animal welfare is promoted, and we hope the government recognizes this and continues to maintain and improve our high standards . ”
Some Tory MPs are concerned that Ms Truss would drop Johnson’s Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill, which sought to impose new controls on the species of domesticated animals imported or exported to and from Britain.
There are also fears that legislative plans to ban Britain’s trophy hunting – a pledge from the Tory Manifesto – could be shelved.
Former environment secretary George Eustice said ministers were “absolutely committed” to a bill, but he was replaced by Ranil Jayawardena when Ms Truss named her first cabinet earlier this month.
“I would expect the government to deliver on all of its animal welfare commitments and commitments, regardless of who plays a role in different departments,” said Tory MP Henry Smith, who said Mr Goldsmith had been a “fantastic champion of animal welfare issues”. .