This week I want to write about a subject that is becoming ever more critical for us all each day that passes. Action needs to be taken urgently on the environment and climate change.
Energy bills have increased, important energy projects have stalled and we are on course to miss important climate change targets thanks to this government. Labour will stand up for the many by reforming the energy market to keep bills down. We will build a fairer Britain by investing in the infrastructure to safeguard our future energy needs and to provide the jobs of the future.
Instead of investing in renewables the Tories have instead decided to press ahead with fracking, even allowing it under National Parks. The United Kingdom is now on course to miss carbon reduction targets and a legally binding 15 percent renewable target by 2020. Labour will stand up for the many by keeping bills down and investing in the energy solutions of the future. I know that Labour will cap average dual-fuel household energy bills at £1,000 a year to protect consumers and to limit price increases.
Labour will take energy back into public ownership to make our energy work for consumers, including supporting the creation of publicly owned, locally accountable energy companies and co-operatives to rival existing private energy suppliers, with at least one in every region. The Labour Party backs new nuclear and an expansion of renewable and low-carbon technologies to safeguard our energy security and meet our climate change targets.
Labour would introduce a commitment to get 60 per cent of our energy from low carbon or renewable sources by 2030.
Air quality improved under the last Labour Government but the Tories have failed to keep this improvement going and have been sued and lost three times in the courts, wasting taxpayers’ money in the process.
I want us to see the introduction of a new Clean Air Act for a common set of air standards across the country.
Over four million UK households (more than one in ten) were recorded as being in fuel poverty in 2014 and the Government is on course to miss its 2030 fuel poverty target. I welcome the recent action taken by Cornwall Council in declaring a climate change emergency and its subsequent actions to help spread the climate change emergency message to communities and to discuss ways to help.
Doing nothing is not an option. We need to act now.
In a recent Environment Agency report it was noted that “whole areas of England may have to be abandoned due to the threat of flooding caused by climate change. Communities near the coast or rivers could be forced to move as the country prepares to counter average global temperature rises of up to 4C”.
Each of our communities needs to be informed and educated about what we can all do to help.
This blog will be created by members of the Exec committee on topics of interest to the St Austell & Newquay Labour Party