Neither party is showing much appetite for the hard policy decisions that are necessary to cut CO2 emissions – and time is running out
The Conservatives are lagging far behind on the climate crisis, that much we know. But the Labour party is not showing the leadership that the country needs on reaching net zero greenhouse gas emissions, the chairman of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) has warned.
Lord Deben, a former Conservative environment secretary, has long been a critic of the government, and recently praised Labour’s stance on opposing new oil and gas licences in the North Sea.
But as he presented his final annual progress report as chairman, he warned that Labour was failing to take on vested interests.
“If you lead, then there are bound to be people who would prefer you not to have made those decisions,” Deben said. “And what we are seeing at the moment is not only in government but in opposition, people being unwilling to lead lest some people don’t like the decisions that are being made. But these decisions have to be made, and there will be some people who disagree with them, and it is no good hoping that it will all go away.”
He added: “Right across the political spectrum, there is an unwillingness to lead.”