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Sunday, February 05, 2012

Further request for the proposals for international co-operation on climate chaange

Dear Mr. Lacy,

Thank you for your reply on 3rd February.

You say “The ‘Durban Platform’ is a roadmap to a global legal agreement applicable to all parties. Negotiations for the new agreement are to begin early this year.” This I understand. What the Durban platform states is “that the global nature of climate change calls for the widest possible cooperation by all countries.”

I have referred to the report you quoted. It makes it clear legislative policies are inadequate to avoid runaway climate change. Its introduction states, “With the latest figures on global emissions showing a 6% increase in 2010, it is clear
 that
 more
 needs
 to
 be
 done
 to
 slow
 and
 reverse
 the
 emissions
 of
 greenhouse
 gases
 if
 the
 international
 community
 is
 to
 have
 a
 realistic
 chance
 of
 limiting
 global
 average
 temperature
 rise
 to
 2oC.
 
 This
 report
 demonstrates
 that
 legislators
 are
 responding to this challenge albeit not at the level of ambition required,” and goes on to say “Domestic legislation is not a substitute for international concerted action.” As it is international concerted action that is needed, my question still stands - what will the UK government propose by the 28th February to ensure the international cooperation for tackling climate change happens?

Your response gives no evidence that either the government or your department is thinking through the implications of cooperation on climate change. Instead, your responses indicate thinking that remains wedded to the concept of maintaining business as usual. Your proposal of a Local Sustainable Transport Fund has as its objective creating economic growth. This is the opposite to what is needed to tackle increasing carbon emissions. Likewise carbon savings from the CRC reduction scheme will be quickly negated by economic growth. Furthermore, neither of these proposals will do anything to increase international cooperation on climate change. This is the objective of the Durban Platform.

Your admission that no assessment of the construction and operation of Trident has been incorporated into our climate change commitments is quite incredible. As you will appreciate Trident requires a massive military industrial complex and a significant proportion of our economic activity must be devoted towards raising the taxation for it. By pursuing Trident, we also force other nation states to follow suite and they will be caught in the same carbon trap. The end result is that the Trident type systems that nations are busily building around the world to protect their security have become the biggest threat to us all by locking us into high carbon industries and inevitable runaway climate change. This makes climate change agreements of the type we need impossible and forces nations to compete rather than cooperate.

As your response also says, “Through collaborative discussion and analysis, the preferred policies and measures to meet carbon budgets are agreed across government,” I again ask for the carbon budget associated with the construction, operation and funding of Trident. If you are not able to do this, then please answer the following:

Which sections of society will be the first to be forced to make cuts in the likely event the CO2 emission targets are not achieved?

Of the carbon reductions that you have quoted to 2022, how much of this is due to exporting manufacturing to highly polluting countries such as China?

Yours sincerely,
Kevin Lister
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