His predecessor, Amanda Milling was driven around in an electric I-PACE Jaguar until she lost her job as party co-chair in September’s reshuffle – but Mr Dowden opted to keep the car and driver he had at DCMS
Image: AFP via Getty Images)
Tory Chairman Oliver Dowden turned down an electric limousine to keep his gas guzzling Jaguar, the Sunday Mirror can reveal.
His predecessor, Amanda Milling was driven around in an electric I-PACE Jaguar until she lost her job as party co-chair in September’s reshuffle.
But just a month before the UK hosts world leaders at the COP26 climate conference in Glasgow, Mr Dowden opted to keep the petrol-powered car and driver he had in his previous job as Culture Secretary.
A Tory source said: “Amanda Milling went for an electric car when she was offered as she thought it was important for the Conservative party chair to do their bit for the environment ahead of COP.
“But Oliver clearly doesn’t feel the same. When he arrived at CCHQ he asked for a petrol one instead.”
But a spokeswoman for Mr Dowden said: “He has a lovely driver and just wanted to keep working with him. Someone has got the wrong end of the stick.”
As Minister without Portfolio, Mr Dowden’s limousine is provided by the Government Car Service at taxpayer expense.
Drivers come with a specific car, and while some ministers retain their driver and car when changing departments, not all do.
Mr Dowden’s spokeswoman said he had “just kept same drivers from [his former department] as many ministers do when they move.”
In June, Mr Dowden helped launch the Tech Zero Taskforce at the CogX tech conference in London.
He told attendees: “I hope this marks a turning point in our fight against climate change – and it’s right that the tech industry leads the charge.”
But Mr Dowden has voted against a string of opposition motions in the Commons calling on the government to make commitments to tackle the climate crisis.