Emissions hit all time high: how will the “greenest government ever” respond?

Following the International Energy Agency's announcement carbon emissions have hit an all-time high, the Fabian Society's Natan Doron looks at the government's record.

Deficit reduction comes before energy and climate change in the coalition agreement – but in real terms policy priorities there is no alphabetised contents reasoning to hide behind. The case for important signalling and strong leadership from the coalition was made all the more urgent this weekend when the International Energy Agency announced carbon emissions have hit an all-time high.

Left Foot Forward has rightfully led scrutiny of this government’s claim to be the greenest government ever. From transport, to the undermining of the green investment bank and the wider concerns around the green deal, there have been widening concerns about the genuine nature of the government’s environmental agenda.

But as pointed out by Joss Garman on this blog, it is in the interests of those from accross the political spectrum that the government does well on environmental issues, and where progress is made, it should be applauded. Reigning in Osborne’s obsession with deficit reduction above all else to deliver an agreement on climate change targets was Davic Cameron’s most recent environmental achievement.

There were further positive signs too from Nick Clegg when unveiling further details around the green investment bank last week. But in the light of the IEA’s recent data release, such achievements will have to be built on in the next couple of years and the Lib Dems will have to do all they can to prove to their voters they have a voice in the coalition that can deliver the strong policy we need on climate change.

Without such strong action on climate change, it will unfortunately be a lot more than Nick Clegg’s job on the line. As Faith Birol, chief economist of the IEA commented, the recent rise in global emissions suggests that avoiding dangerous climate change is likely to be just “a nice Utopia”.

This coalition is presiding over the UK economy at a crucial stage in the fight to prevent dangerous climate change. It is in no one’s interest that they fail.

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17 Responses to “Emissions hit all time high: how will the “greenest government ever” respond?”

  1. Samir Jeraj

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? http://bit.ly/mwhFZ1 by @NatanDoron

  2. Glenn Daltrey

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? http://bit.ly/mwhFZ1 by @NatanDoron

  3. Natan Doron

    RT @leftfootfwd Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? writes @natandoron http://t.co/ZvNpq45

  4. Christian J Smith

    RT @leftfootfwd Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? writes @natandoron http://t.co/ZvNpq45

  5. Dan Evans

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? http://bit.ly/mwhFZ1 by @NatanDoron

  6. Michael

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the “greenest government ever” respond? I Left Foot Forward – http://j.mp/jvJZKS

  7. Walsall & Wolves GP

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the “greenest government ever” respond? I Left Foot Forward – http://j.mp/jvJZKS

  8. Tim

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the “greenest government ever” respond? I Left Foot Forward – http://j.mp/jvJZKS

  9. soc/res/invest

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government … http://bit.ly/jmQPjP

  10. Melissa Higgs

    RT @leftfootfwd Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? writes @natandoron http://t.co/ZvNpq45

  11. Ed's Talking Balls

    Denying the existence of climate change is as wrongheaded as denying the existence of budget deficits, so I agree that action should be taken to reduce emissions and, somehow, to rebalance our sources of energy. No two ways about it, I agree with LFF on this cause.

    The massive problem, however, that I see as insurmountable at present is that we can only do so much on our own. If we cut back it’ll make no difference whatsoever to the environment, so long as China and India continue to emit such gigantic levels of CO2.

    Unilaterally implementing climate targets is as doomed to fail as unilateral disarmament and unilateral banking reform. We need immediate and binding consensus.

  12. Pucci Dellanno

    Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? http://bit.ly/mwhFZ1 by @NatanDoron

  13. Green Deal Guide

    RT @leftfootfwd: Emissions hit all time high: how will the "greenest government ever" respond? http://t.co/4CnN9cR

  14. yyxhjdsn

    don’t hold your breath for an immediate and binding consensus!

    best to live with the consequences of climate change (which may be positive overall) and increase research into alternatives

  15. mr. Sensible

    The biggest current threat to the green pledge is the transport secretary.

  16. Ed's Talking Balls

    The biggest current threat to great swathes of countryside and financial prudence is the transport secretary, given his downright stupid support for the colossal waste of money that is HS2!

  17. Look Left – Evil in the dock: Mladic finally faces justice | Left Foot Forward

    […] International Energy Agency announced this week that carbon emissions have hit an all-time high. The IEA say the prospect of limiting the global […]

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