Ben Bradshaw’s response to Exeter Climate Action’s 10 Questions on Climate Change

On behalf of Exeter Climate Action, Maurice Spurway sent the following email asking (rather difficult) questions of the 6 Candidates hoping to be Exeter’s next MP on 29 April 2015

This is what that email said…
I’m writing on behalf of the 400 members of Exeter Climate Action. 2015 is a crunch year for Climate Change.

The successful party (or parties) at this year’s election will have the responsibility of providing leadership at the UN Climate Conference at the end of 2015. Failure could ultimately result in runaway climate change.

It is quite clear that climate change is an issue of the utmost priority.

We would be grateful, therefore, if you could respond to the following questions on climate change.

We will share your answers on our facebook website…
• Will you prioritise Climate Change over Economic Growth?
• What kind of leadership will your party provide at the Paris Climate Talks to ensure that all countries commit to reducing their CO2 emissions in time?
• Do you support “Contraction and Convergence” as a fair technique for sharing the carbon reductions required?
• What decade to you consider that the UK needs to become Fossil Fuel Free?
• How much will your party invest in Renewable Energy?
• What long-term strategy would you propose to decarbonise home heating (replacing gas) and to decarbonise private motoring (replacing petrol/diesel)?
• How do you propose to ensure that the UK’s 8 million energy efficient homes are brought up Grade A Energy Efficiency Rating?
• Will you ban fracking in the UK?
• Would you ever consider Carbon Rationing? Under what circumstances?
• What do you do in your personal life to reduce your own carbon footprint?
Thank you very much
Maurice Spurway
On behalf of Exeter Climate Action”

Ben Bradshaw’s response was posted on the Exeter Climate Action‘s Facbeook page on 05 May 2015:

Thank you very much for your email. Due to the huge volume of letters and emails I am currently receiving, I’m afraid I won’t be able to reply as personally and in as much detail as I would like.

However, I believe that climate change is the most serious challenge we face and that we need concerted, immediate and sustained action to reduce carbon emissions and to avert the disastrous environmental and economic consequences of climate change – both in the UK and the rest of the world.

The last Labour Government made climate change a priority, culminating in the historic 2008 Climate Change Act, the first of its kind in the world.

However, I’m afraid under the Conservative-Liberal Democrat Government we have been going backwards.

Investment in renewable energy has collapsed and the Conservatives and Liberal Democrats consistently resisted pressure from Labour to introduce a clear carbon reduction target.

I’m extremely pleased that Labour has clearly committed to a target to decarbonise our electricity by 2030.

We will also restore support for renewable energy, a Green Investment Bank, improved provision for walking and cycling, insulating 5 million homes over the next ten years and making sure that Britain meets the EU air quality standards that are currently being badly missed under this Government.

Labour will also work to reinvigorate the international negotiations to tackle climate change which have been badly neglected by the outgoing Government.

I hope this is helpful, but if you have any further questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to get back in touch.

With very best wishes,

Ben Bradshaw