The decision of David Cameron after he became Conservative leader to "bang on" about the environment was welcomed by some - those who felt it showed the Conservatives were becoming more modern and decent, less selfish and narrow - in other words detoxified. It was also welcomed by those Conservatives who felt that whether we like it or not this is an area where state intervention is necessary if the planet is to be rescued. But others felt that Cameron had made a mistake given that the issue is low down on voter concerns. Their view is that the supposed need for drastic action is based on scare mongering.
In this book the eminent Tory thinker Roger Scruton offers a different path. He says that Conservatives should talk about the environment, that there are serious concerns to be addressed. But the mistake of David Cameron is assuming that Conservatives should cravenly sign up to the Left's policies - more tax and spending, more regulation and so on. By either copying Leftist environmentalism, or not talking about it at all, Conservatives have surrendered their natural territory - that of conservation.
Conservatives have generally allowed to remain unchallenged, the claim that capitalism and the nation state are to blame for environmental problems. But Scruton, for one, is not prepared to concede either of these points.