Category Archives: Political leadership

COP26: it’s time to deliver

This is an extract from a speech by the Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP, shadow secretary of state for business, energy and industrial strategy, to Green Alliance on 13 October 2021.

I want to try to draw lessons for Glasgow from the ill-fated Copenhagen summit, which I attended as UK climate change secretary, and the successful Paris Summit of 2015. Copenhagen ended in acrimony for a whole range of reasons, but partly it was the result of a breakdown in trust between developing and vulnerable countries on one hand and developed countries on the other.

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Conservative Party Conference: Boris Johnson holds the key to environmental progress

Green Alliance descended on Manchester for the Conservative Party Conference, along with the rest of Westminster, not really knowing what to expect. For many, including Conservatives first elected in 2019, this was their first in-person party event of this parliament. It was a noticeably younger crowd, perhaps a result of traditional members staying at home due to Covid-19, or a newer younger membership?

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The German election result has moved climate centre stage

This post is by Ben Westerman, freelance political adviser working with Green Alliance.

The technocratic world of German politics bares little resemblance to the freneticism of Westminster but, in the wake of September’s federal election, coalition talks could prove crucial to global climate ambitions. With the running of the world’s fourth largest economy up for grabs, climate policy is the faultline and, as an industrial superpower, what happens next in Germany is crucial before and after COP26.

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What will the reshuffle mean for environmental politics?

“Away with the cant of ‘Measures, not men!’ – the idle supposition that it is the harness and not the horses that draw the chariot along.” Measures matter, or course, but it is ministers, women and men, who champion them and drive them through. This reshuffle matters, and it looks good for those who care about action on climate and the wider environment.

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The UK is behind on climate action but the public wants to keep going

This post first appeared on Business Green.

In The Guns of August, a bestselling account of the first month of World War One, historian Barbara Tuchman wrote: “no more distressing moment can ever face a British government than that which requires it to come to a hard and fast and specific decision”. The government is in the midst of one such moment, with time running out to act on climate change. Ministers must decide quickly how the UK will make the transition to a net zero world. 

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Olympic champions in Tokyo, let’s be climate champions in Glasgow

This post is by Robbie MacPherson, environment APPG coordinator and political adviser at Green Alliance.

This week the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (the IPCC) reconfirmed what we already knew; that climate change is the most serious challenge of our time and that human behaviour has contributed to a warming planet. The IPCC Report was also clear that runaway global heating is inevitable without rapid, largescale emissions reductions this decade. Whether they like it or not, the report signals a clear message to decision makers in the UK and internationally: now is the time to go ‘faster, higher and stronger’ in our efforts to tackle climate change.

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