BY KATIE - MYGREENPOD, 14 Feb'15

CAMERON, CLEGG AND MILIBAND HAVE SIGNED A CROSS-PARTY CLIMATE CHANGE AGREEMENT

In a highly unusual move, the prime minister, deputy prime minister and leader of the opposition have agreed to work together across party lines to tackle climate change.

The agreement came hot on the heels of The Climate Coalition’s Show the Love campaign, which has reached millions across the UK.

Show the Love

 

The cross-party agreement was brokered by Green Alliance, with support from Christian Aid, CAFOD, Greenpeace, RSPB and WWF. It includes commitments to seek a strong global climate deal and to end the unabated use of coal in power generation.

2015 is a critical year for climate change negotiations, which will take place throughout the year in the run-up to the December Paris summit.

‘This agreement represents inspiring leadership and true statesmanship by all three men. The political courage it represents on all sides is exactly what our world most needs in order to solve the climate crisis. Thank you! Thank you! And thank you!’

Al Gore, former vice president of the USA

The joint pledge

  • To seek a fair, strong, legally binding, global climate deal which limits temperature rises to below 2°C.
  • To work together, across party lines, to agree carbon budgets in accordance with the Climate Change Act.
  • To accelerate the transition to a competitive, energy-efficient low-carbon economy and to end the use of unabated coal for power generation.

‘Climate change poses a threat not just to the environment, but also to poverty eradication abroad and to economic prosperity at home. I strongly support a global deal at Paris this year to tackle that threat head-on.’

David Cameron

‘Tackling climate change today for a better future is something I have taken very seriously in Government. It’s an issue that crosses all political divides, and the pupils I’ve met are living proof of the strength of feeling out there for protecting our environment. This is a crucial year as world leaders meet to discuss how we protect our environment long into the future, taking crucial decisions that will impact generations to come.’

Nick Clegg

‘I believe tackling climate change is the most important thing I can do in politics for the long-term future of my kids and their generation. The conference in Paris is crucial to anyone who cares about the future of the planet, our shared economic future and the national security of our country. I will not leave those principles behind at the door to Downing Street and I will do all I can to secure an ambitious agreement in Paris.’

Ed Miliband

The cost of coal

Air pollution from the UK’s coal plants causes an estimated 1,600 early deaths per year and costs the taxpayer between £1bn and £3.1bn annually in health impacts.

‘This pledge marks a turning point in the collective effort to take Britain’s energy system out of the Victorian age and into the 21st century. For the first time all of the UK’s main political parties have committed to ending carbon pollution from coal plants, giving this country a better chance of tackling climate change.

‘Burning coal is harmful to human health, catastrophic for the climate, and, with Russia our biggest supplier, a risk to energy security too. To put an end to all this, party leaders now need to set a clear expiry date on coal pollution, stop subsidies to coal plants, and start investing in the clean energy infrastructure this country really needs.’

John Sauven, executive director, Greenpeace UK

The Committee on Climate Change – the government’s own climate advisers – has said that, in order for the UK to decorbanise at minimum cost, ‘there can be no role for conventional coal generation in the UK beyond the early 2020s’.

The signed Climate Change Agreement can be found here. The Green Alliance was founded in 1979 ‘to inject an environmental perspective into the political life of Britain.’