Climate Change: Response to Friends of the Earth

Thank you for contacting me about climate change.

Climate change is widely seen as one of the greatest challenges we face, and I can assure you that I recognise the importance and urgency of public debate on this issue which has been given new focus by the conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s special report on global warming.

I am proud of the UK’s world-leading role in tackling climate change and the transition to Clean Growth, with the UK being the first country to legislate to eliminate our contribution to climate change by 2050, and the fastest in the G20 to cut emissions. Since 1990, the UK has cut emissions by more than 40 per cent while growing the economy by more than two thirds.

The UK is setting the pace in clean growth and with Government support, £92 billion has been invested by businesses in clean energy since 2010. Our renewable capacity has quadrupled since 2010 and the UK has the largest installed offshore wind capacity in the world thanks to our sustained investment in this crucial technology.

Overall, nearly 400,000 people are working in the low-carbon economy and the Government is committed to creating thousands of highly skilled, well paid jobs up and down the country. For instance, the Offshore Wind Sector Deal could see the number of jobs triple in this sector to 27,000 by 2030.

To continue this momentum, the Government has announced around £2 billion for new policies since setting the Net Zero targets and a new Cabinet Committee on Climate Change, chaired by the Prime Minister, has been set up to ensure that the whole Government is focussed on tackling this challenge. The UK will also continue to use its position as a global leader by hosting the UN Climate Change Summit in Glasgow in 2020 and will ask international partners to match the UK’s ambition.

At the same time, the ambitious Environment Bill is being introduced to protect and improve the environment for future generations, enshrining in law environmental principles and legally-binding targets. 

Thank you again for taking the time to contact me.

Craig Whittaker MP

January 2020