Ed Miliband revealed last night that the changing position of Japan, India, and China meant "there are reasons to be cheerful" over the Copenhagen climate change talks in December. The remarks are more positive than previous assessments by the Climate Secretary.
Ed Miliband revealed last night that the changing position of Japan, India, and China meant “there are reasons to be cheerful” over the Copenhagen climate change talks in December. The remarks are more positive than previous assessments by the Climate Secretary.
Speaking at a public rally in Shoreditch, London, Ed Miliband said:
“There are times when I feel optimistic and times when I feel pessimistic … But no-one wants to be responsible for this thing failing and that’s a good sign.”
At Labour party conference, Miliband had told a fringe event organised by the Independent that he was “feeling pretty pessimistic” over Copenhagen because the talks were “in peril.”
At the public rally last night, Miliband described European heads of government talks next week as important for reaching an agreement. He went on to say that two things were needed at Copenhagen: “first, a set of commitments globally so that emissions start to fall rather than rise by 2020 … and second, money for adaptation.”
He also defended the Government’s decision to vote down a Liberal Democrat motion binding government departments to reduce their carbon emissions by 10 per cent by 2010. Miliband said, “The question is one of practicality and what is needed. We should move as far and fast as we can on public buildings … But there are other departments like Defra that have achieved 40 per cent already.”
Miliband was criticised by Andrew Simms of the New Economic Foundation for not showing sufficient leadership on the sacrifices that members of the public will need to make. Simms said, “in cutting our consumption we have an opportunity to get off the treadmill and have better lives.”Like this article? Sign up to Left Foot Forward's weekday email for the latest progressive news and comment - and support campaigning journalism by making a donation today.