Last modified on Tue 30 Apr 2019
And failure is not an option. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has warned of the if global average temperatures rise by more than 1.5C. We now have only 11 years to take decisive action. We already see 1C of warming and accompanying extreme weather events, including heatwaves and droughts, while sea levels rise. Later this week, the Committee on Climate Change will publish its advice on when we need to meet net-zero emissions. It is imperative to meet our international responsibilities for implementing the and pursue an accelerated path to limit warming to no more than 1.5C.
Doing so will require a commitment, and a plan. We need to mobilise a carbon army of workers to retrofit and insulate homes, cutting bills, reducing emissions and making people’s lives better. We need to move to sustainable forms of transport and zero-carbon vehicles as quickly as possible, saving thousands of lives from air pollution. We need to end the opposition to onshore wind power and position ourselves as a global centre of excellence for renewable manufacturing. And we need to protect and restore threatened habitats, and to secure major transitions in agriculture and diets that are essential if we are to meet our obligations. Just in these areas of policy we already see an answer to the immediate economic concerns people have: jobs and hope. Green jobs must be secure and decently paid, with a central role for trade unions in a just transition for all workers and communities affected.
No doubt some people will say that the UK should not act on these issues alone. We disagree. We believe there is economic and societal advantage, not detriment, in doing so. We also believe our leadership can make a difference. It was the moral authority from the world-leading cross-party Climate Change Act of 2008 that has allowed successive governments to have international influence, including on the groundbreaking Paris agreement. If the government aspires to host the next UN COP climate change summit in 2020, the meeting that will determine the world’s climate change commitments, then we will need to increase our ambition here at home, set out a clear plan and start making some challenging decisions now.
It is time for the UK to lead again and the commission will aim to help shape that leadership. And when people ask how we can bring the country together, we believe this issue has the potential to do so. For some, it will be the climate issue that motivates them, for others the economic and social justice gains that can be achieved in the war against climate change. For many it will be all of these. We owe it to our country and its future to make this happen.
• Ed Miliband is Labour MP for Doncaster North and a former leader of the Labour party; Caroline Lucas is Green MP for Brighton Pavilion; and Laura Sandys is a former Conservative MP for South Thanet
Let’s seize the moment and create a Green New Deal for the UK | Ed Miliband, Caroline Lucas and Laura Sandys | Opinion | The Guardian
Last modified on Tue 30 Apr 2019 And failure is not an option. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has warned of the if global average temperatures rise by more than 1.5C. We now have only 11 years to take decisive action. We already see 1C of warming and accompanying extreme weather events, including heatwaves… [Read More]