Are the Conservatives losing their conviction on climate change? | world news

A year ago, around this time, Boris Johnson was preparing for the UN’s COP26 high-level climate change summit in Glasgow.

It was by no means a perfect meeting, and Mr Johnson’s record on environmental issues was far from spotless, but real progress was made on coal, forestry and national carbon reduction targets. emissions.

The Prime Minister bathed in the spotlight, smiling and cajoling, as Prince Charles and his son William gave speeches, charming world leaders and helping to position the UK as a leader on climate change .

Liz Truss’ speech stopped by protest E! News UK

Twelve months later, it’s a very different picture.

The government is grappling with energy and cost-of-living emergencies, and for many the rosy glow of COP26 is fast fading.

In fact, it has been reported that our new Prime Minister has asked our new King, famous for his passion for environmental protection, not to attend COP27 in Egypt next month, despite his invitation.

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“We had to send a direct message to the PM”

Instead, Liz Truss seems determined to start a new era of fossil fuels in the UK, lift the moratorium on fracking for shale gas and prepare to hand out around 100 new offshore oil and gas licenses. North.

Activists are worried about what appears to be a loss of belief in the fight against climate change, and today two members of Greenpeace crushed his speech at the party conference, protesting against fracking among other issues.

Ms Truss dismissed them as ‘part of the anti-growth coalition’, to much applause.

This language is new and echoes the terms of a review, ordered by Ms Truss, of the UK’s commitment to net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

The objective of the review is to ensure that the policy is “pro-growth and pro-business” and to “scrutinize the green transition to ensure that investment continues to drive economic growth and create jobs as well as increasing energy security”.

The man leading the business department and therefore the clean energy transition and much of the government’s climate change policy is Jacob Rees-Mogg.

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What are people saying now that COP26 is over?

Although, like Ms Truss, he recognized the importance of renewable energy sources and nuclear power, Mr Rees-Mogg has previously warned against ‘climate alarmism’ and remarked that it wished his constituents had cheap energy, “rather than I would have had windmills”.

Ms Truss has publicly stated that she is committed to achieving net zero, but for many observers there is a clear slowdown on the matter.

Perhaps, for a troubled prime minister, this is one crisis too many to handle.

Activists will be deeply concerned that his government is beginning to portray those pursuing a green agenda as anti-growth when his predecessor saw it as a great economic opportunity.

Teresa H. Sadler