Politics Summary: Tuesday, September 22nd

At the United Nations today, China is expected to announce new measures to cut pollution. India’s environment minister, Jairam Ramesh, told the Guardian his government planned to make “aggressive” cuts in India’s emissions. Business leaders are also taking positive steps with British Airways announcing that airlines, airports and aircraft companies aim to cut emissions to 50 per cent below 2005 levels by 2050. More than 500 top global companies are signing a call for action on climate change. But Climate Change Secretary Ed Miliband, warns in the Guardian that, “Politics is still lagging behind science, domestic opposition is strong in many countries, the demands of finance are enormous and the technological leaps required are great.”

The Liberal Democrat’s plans to add a levy of 0.5 per cent on all properties over £1 million came under fire when it became clear that leaders did not know whether valuations would be based on house sales, Land Registry figures, or a complete revaluation of properties across the country. Meanwhile the party is split over tuition fees with Sir Menzies Campbell saying there could be no “sacred cows” while Simon Hughes insisted that “there are other ways we can find savings.”

Also in Bournemouth, a new poll revealed that 36  per cent did not know who Nick Clegg was. A list compiled for the Telegraph by Iain Dale has suggested that Vince Cable is a more influential Liberal Democrat than the party’s leader. In the Independent, Steve Richards writes, “What is increasingly clear is that if there is a hung parliament, the Liberal Democrats will not join either of the other parties in a formal coalition, although some at the top would be tempted.”

The Times reveals that Labour may be backing away from plans to replace Trident with a Cabinet source saying, “I don’t expect the manifesto will lock us into words committing us to any particular way of providing the deterrent. The article cites an exclusive YouGov poll for Left Foot Forward which showed that two-in-three oppose replacing Trident.

The Guardian reports that Gordon Brown is to set out proposals at the G20 this week aimed at boosting Chinese consumer demand. The plans would create an insurance pool that would reduce incentives on countries like China to build-up huge reserves. The Prime Minister will not have one-to-one talks with President Obama during his four-day trip to America this week.

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