Defra to get 15 percent less money
Though Defra will suffer weighty budget cuts, flood protection funding and national park funding will be ring-fenced, according to the chancellor. This means the department will have to find cuts elsewhere.
Osborne also announced that the Department for energy and climate change (DECC) is to suffer cuts of 22 percent, but said spending on renewable energy and climate research would increase.
He said a new body, Research UK, will operate across the seven current research councils, to improve research funding strategy.
The Chancellor also said he would invest £12bn in capital infrastructure and a boost to the Government’s digital service. This will include introducing a digital tax account by 2020 to replace tax returns, and opening a consultation on tax payment dates. ■