Yesterday in Parliament Labour’s Shadow Environment Secretary declared a national climate and environment emergency in the House of Commons and challenged Michael Gove to do the same.
Labour’s announcement follows a wave of motions passed by local councils declaring a climate emergency and a call to action to prevent a dangerous rise in global temperatures by radically transforming our economy.
‘Climate Emergency’ is an internationally recognised declaration being used around the world to publicly declare concern over the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) findings. The IPCC’s recent Special Report, describes the enormous harm that a 2°C rise in global temperatures would cause.
The melting of the polar ice caps and the impacts of climate change are going to be the major issue in the lives of my grandchildren. We have to stop kicking these issues down the road, climate and the environment needs to be at the centre of political thinking.
More people than ever are taking steps to limit their personal carbon footprint but to really address this crisis we need radical action at the Government level.
We need to rethink the way we approach issues like energy production, agriculture, housing standards, transport, plastics, pollinators, wildlife protection, flood defences and the longer we wait to act the bigger the challenges will be.
I’m pleased to see the Labour Party recognise the emergency that we face. We need all political parties to do the same and push for radical change both here and around the world to protect our environment and secure our future.