Tories branded ‘totally reckless’ as 2023 set to be hottest year on record

The Tories have also been accused of running a "government of destruction"

Rishi Sunak

Leading climate scientists have said that 2023 will go down in history as the hottest year on record, as the climate crisis continues to accelerate. Samantha Burgess, the deputy director of the Copernicus Climate Change Service today said: “We can say with near certainty that 2023 will be the warmest year on record, and is currently 1.43C above the pre-industrial average.”

The news is a stark warning that governments are failing to get a grip on the climate emergency mere weeks before a crucial climate summit in Dubai later this month. World leaders will be meeting for the COP28 summit from November 30 to December 12 in pursuit of international agreements to reduce carbon emissions.

It also comes just one day after Rishi Sunak’s government used the King’s Speech to confirm plans for further licensing of oil and gas fields in the North Sea.

As a result, the Tory government has come under heavy criticism for its climate policies. Green Party co-leader Carla Denyer branded the government ‘totally reckless’ for continuing to push ahead with more fossil fuel extraction.

Denyer said: “Another week, another indicator that our climate is in meltdown. News that 2023 will almost certainly be confirmed as the hottest year on record, comes just a day after the government made the totally reckless decision to push for new oil and gas licences. This represents a massive two fingers up at communities at home and abroad who are on the front line of floods, droughts and fires, and to future generations who face an uninhabitable planet if we continue with business as usual. It’s also another alarming example of the Conservatives’ allergy to evidence-based policymaking.”

Climate campaign group Extinction Rebellion accused the Tories of being a “government of destruction”. The group tweeted: “2023 was the hottest year on record, 1.4c above the pre industrial average… Meanwhile our government of destruction continues to license new oil & gas. 1.5c is lost. This is a human rights violation on a planetary scale.”

Chris Jarvis is head of strategy and development at Left Foot Forward

Image credit: Simon Walker / Number 10 – Creative Commons

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