Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Just who is playing party politics with climate change

I wasn't going to post the contents of the email I got back from Michael Connarty last night until I heard the same refrain from elsewhere. Here is the motion I asked him to back:

"That this House believes it is vital that the UK demonstrates political leadership at all levels in response to the climate crisis, and that this is particularly important ahead of the United Nations Climate Change summit in Copenhagen if there is to be an international agreement which will avert the worst effects of catastrophic climate change; further believes that immediate practical responses to the crisis should include a massive expansion of renewable energy and energy efficiency and a commitment for all homes in Britain to be warm homes within ten years; acknowledges that action taken now to tackle the climate crisis will cost less than action taken in the future; notes the declared support of Labour and Conservative frontbenchers to the objective of the 10:10 campaign which calls for 10 per cent greenhouse gas emission reductions by the end of 2010; agrees that the House will sign up to the 10:10 campaign; calls on Her Majesty’s government and all public sector bodies now to make it their policy to achieve a 10 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by the end of 2010; and further calls on the government to bring a delivery plan before this House by the end of 2009 on how these objectives will be achieved."

Looks pretty much like what the Lib Dems called for at our Autumn conference. However, Michael's opening salvo in his email back to me was:

"I support the 10:10 proposal, but sadly the Lib Dems in the UK parliament have decided to make it a point scoring exercise rather than getting cross party support on a useful target to try to set public authorities, councils and Quangos. I have spoken to your Scottish MPs about their Party's sillyness."

But surely I read in the above 'calls on Her Majesty’s government and all public sector bodies now to make it their policy to achieve a 10 per cent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by the end of 2010'. So Michael do you support 10:10 or not? I merely ask as that is the core of the message in a nutshell and is what Government can legislate for. If not what useful target do you want to set public authorities, councils and Quangos? Be careful how you answer that as even I recognise that the 10% is going to have to be achieved through tough measures. So higher seems unlikely, therefore I'm guessing based on the past 12 years experience you'll be asking less.

There's even acknowledgement that both the other major parties front bench teams have given their backing to the objective of 10:10. The fact that they have and have yet to talk about, let alone bring a delivery plan to be is an issue that needs to be addressed.

What draws me back to the subject I blogged about earlier was that Labour Internet Tsar Kerry McCarthy MP tweeted about a stronger Labour amendment that she would be backing. She's not alone, Plymouth MP Linda Gilroy used surprising similar language to that of Michael Connarty and Kerry. Indeed she says:

"I think the Lib Dems are playing politics with something that should be above politics.

"I would hope to be in a position to vote for a strong motion as amended by the Government to reflect the leadership role it continues to play. We were the first country in the world to put into law such a comprehensive framework."

So let me get this right as the motion may not reflect the strong leadership (see the graphs from earlier folks) that Labour have given they will not be backing a 10% reduction in public sector CO2 emissions in the next 14 months. The reason I stumbled across Mrs Gilroy's comments was of course trying to find the wording of the Labour amendment. Silly me after yesterday's I should have guessed that was a vain hope.

Piecing two and two together, it would appear that the amendment will be looking for a useful target to be set. By that I'm guessing they'll not impose 10% by the next year, maybe even leave it up to individual departments to come to their own figure. It will praise the Labour Government for setting targets, buying carbon credits, holding off doing much constructively until near the target dates. After all a landing on the magic figure however it is achieved is better than not setting the targets at all, right? Wrong.

The longer we put off reducing our emissions on target for the final deadline the closer the unfortunate deadlines move forward too. Those unfortunate deadlines include the earth's temperature rising, climate being irreversibly changed and weather patterns being distorted. The irony for the UK is that global warming is liable to lead to a UK cooling and the Atlantic Drift Current diverts away from our shores.

I look forward to seeing the wording of the Government amendment I doubt it is as clearly put as the Lib Dem motion and therein lies the crux of just who is playing party politics with the climate. Are Labour really above politics in this issue themselves, or are they just wanting to count up past points ignoring demerits in their own achievements?


neil craig said...

The globe is not warming. The entire thing is a fraud based on proven lies. It is hardly playing party politics to say that every remotely honest politician knows & acknowledges this.

Stephen Glenn said...

every remotely honest politician knows & acknowledges this

So that'll be George W. Bush, Sammy Wilson and Nick Griffen, quite an interesting group of politicians there.

Also compared to your usual responses you tak about proof but fail to provide any. But as I did mention even with climate change it would not necessarily mean a warmer Britain.

neil craig said...

You missed Valclav Klaus & Sarah Palin. You have also made the intellectual error of undistributed middle but even so seem unable to name a single politician who is not wholly corrupt who claims it is warming.

May I ask if you claim the globe is currently warming? It seems unnecessary to provide evidence of something if it is not in dispute.

I thank you for accepting that when we have previously debated I have always been able to provide copious evidence & you have not, though that has not led you to accept that mere facts should interfere with your opinions.

Stephen Glenn said...

OK I didn't mention Kim Young Il either.

There is overwhelming backing from the scientific community that we are in a state of global warming. The polar icecaps are shrinking. More of Greenland is appearing green instead of white. Even our own winters within our lifetime are surely milder now than in our youth.

I'll accpet copius may have been what you provided whether or not it was evidence is in dispute though Neil.

neil craig said...

The fact is that the globe is cooling & the facts trump all scare stories.

There is certainly overwhelming backing from government employees. Independent scientists are, at the very worst, unsupportive of the warming scam - the single largest expression of scientists opinions, the Oregon Petition, agrees that no only is there no problem but that increasing CO2 is a benefit. Obviously this is only headlined by honest media.

Antarctic ice was always expanding, so, this year is Arctic. Last year was not a mild winter. While the Met Office say this one will be they said the same about last year & our recent "barbecue summer".

Oh yes - & you are wrong about your friend Kim - North Korea has jumped on the catastrophic warming bandwagon - I trust we can both accept this as evidence of the integrity of alarmists.

I ask once again for you to specifically say if you claim the globe is currently warming.

Stephen Glenn said...

I'll say again yes.

So says National Geographic, or NASA or the Environmental Defense Fund with various citations.

How about some pictorial evidence.

You will notice I've avoided media and you appear to have objections there, and bar one I've ignored an environmental pressure group.

neil craig said...

Well here you are with various graphs correlating the rise in CO2 (thats the straight rising line) with temperature (thats the jagged but overall slightly falling line).

Presumably in avoiding media & environmental pressure groups you have not noticed that National Geographic is a magazine, that the Environmental Defence Fund is a fund that makes money by pushing "environmental" scares & are unaware that NASA/GISS climate figures come from James Hansen (whom I hope you have heard of).

Presumably you think the Vatican would be a good independent referee as to the Pope's infalibility or a NATO funded "court" on whether NATO genocide is a good thing.

That or you have been totally incapable of finding anything better.

neil craig said...

So, yet again, you now know that I was wholly correct & that there is indeed no remotely honest politician who claims the globe is warming. That they are all wholly corrupt fascists trying to use a false scare story to gain more power over people.

So why do you remain in a party which you know to be a wholly corrupt anti-liberal, fascist & racist organisation openly engaged in genocide & worse? As one of the very few LD bloggers who appears does not believe that censorship should be the first option are you really so illiberal?


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