Dunne defends Boris in advance of crunch climate conference

A south Shropshire MP has defended the Government's role in holding a crucial environmental conference in November.

Philip Dunne
Philip Dunne

BBC's Newsnight show lined up Ludlow MP Philip Dunne to face former Labour leader Ed Miliband who was accusing Prime Minister Boris Johnson of not doing enough in advance of COP 26 in Glasgow.

During the show on Monday (Sept 13) presenter Emily Maitlis revealed the findings of research which showed a threefold increase in the number of days where somewhere on the planet hits a scorching 50 degrees Celsius. Record temperatures in the high 40s Celsius have also been recorded in Canada and Italy this year.

Critics including Mr Miliband say that political leaders have to act very quickly to have any chance of stopping runaway climate change. The accusation was that Mr Johnson has not forged an agreement between rich nations to give developing nations £100 billion each year to mitigate the impact of climate change.

Mr Dunne chairs the influential environmental audit committee and has himself recently called for more action from the Government on policy issues.

But on Monday's programme he said to blame the British Prime Minister was missing the bigger global picture. The conference will give the USA and China the opportunity to make commitments.

Mr Dunne said: "The big picture is we have a conference in Glasgow in two months time where there is the opportunity for the first time in several years to bring the two major economies the United States under their change of leader and China, given that they are hosting their own biodiversity COP the opportunity to make a substantive and material difference to the pledges that they've made before."

Mr Dunne tweeted his position which brought an immediate online reaction from eco campaigners.

Shrewsbury Greens said Government policies won't stop "runaway climate chaos".

"UK needs effective *policies* if it is to bring the world together, doesn’t it?," they tweeted.

"Licensing a new oil field (Cambo) and a new coal field in Cumbria, promoting the £27bn road-building programme, airport expansion is pushing us all in the wrong direction towards runaway climate chaos."

Cynical Mick Vee tweeted: "To characterise it as all the fault of the British Prime Minister is just missing the big picture - says fellow old Etonian and Conservative MP Philip Dunne."

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