Michael Gove skips climate change summit day after UN report calls for urgent action to avoid global disaster
Michael Gove has skipped a key worldwide summit on climate change a day after a landmark UN report warned that “pressing” motion was wanted to keep away from world warming catastrophe.
Mr Gove’s division confirmed the Surroundings Secretary was not in a position to attend the assembly of EU surroundings ministers in Luxembourg, which is particularly about preventing local weather change chopping CO2 emissions.
Although the assembly was attended by Mr Gove’s high counterparts from nations like France, Germany, the Netherlands, and Sweden, he as a substitute despatched one in every of his junior ministers, Therese Coffey, to cowl for him.
The Surroundings Secretary, who’s broadly disliked in Brussels for his high-profile position within the Brexit marketing campaign, has didn’t attend any of the EU council conferences since he got here to workplace, at all times sending deputies as a substitute.
However his non-attendance at Tuesday’s necessary assembly following the IPCC report recommending “speedy, far-reaching and unprecedented adjustments in all elements of society” angered environmentalists, who mentioned his “failure to interact” was damning and confirmed the restricted extent of the Authorities’s ambitions.
European ministers used the assembly to undertake a harder place on local weather change emphasising “the unprecedented urgency which is required to step up world efforts to keep away from the harmful results of local weather change” and to work on new CO2 emissions requirements for automobiles throughout the bloc.
It got here after Monday’s landmark report by the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Local weather Change (IPCC) warned that the planet would attain the essential 1.5 diploma C warming as early as 2030 beneath present greenhouse fuel emission ranges: risking wildfires, excessive droughts, floods, and critical famine.
Inexperienced MP Caroline Lucas informed The Impartial: “Yesterday’s IPCC report uncovered the Authorities’s method to tackling climate change as utterly insufficient. Michael Gove’s failure to interact with the EU Surroundings Council tells us every part we have to find out about whether or not they plan to take the pressing motion essential to keep away from catastrophe.
“With simply 12 years left to show issues round, we’d like an Surroundings Secretary devoted to working throughout borders to create a fairer, more healthy, safer society – not a self-promoting architect of an environmentally harmful Brexit.”
Buddies of the Earth’s head of politics Dave Timms mentioned: “Hopefully Mr Gove is studying in-depth the lots of of pages of proof the IPCC printed yesterday,”
“He would do nicely to present specific consideration to attaining web zero greenhouse gases, and the crucial position that afforestation and farming has to play in attaining that.”
The Surroundings Secretary’s poor fame at EU stage traces again to his conduct through the 2016 referendum marketing campaign. EU Agriculture Commissioner Phil Hogan, who works on the identical coverage patch as Mr Gove, in June accused the minister by title of “deception and lies” through the EU referendum marketing campaign.
Arriving on the summit in his absence, Mr Gove’s counterparts from across the EU warned that Monday’s IPCC report confirmed the continent wanted to step up its ambition.
“I believe it’s very clear that the IPCC gave us a really sturdy sign. If we wish to attain the Paris objectives then we have to step up our ambitions,” Stientje Van Veldhoven, the Dutch cupboard minister for the surroundings, informed reporters.
Kimmo Tiilikainen, the Finnish surroundings minister mentioned: “Yesterday we received the most recent scientific information from the IPCC’s particular report and it exhibits that we should do extra and we should do it quicker with a view to maintain world warming at a bearable stage.
“Though the European Union is a number one actor in local weather motion, additionally we should do extra.”
The Division for Surroundings, Meals and Rural Affairs press workplace was given a deadline to answer this story, which it missed.
The Impartial has launched its #FinalSay marketing campaign to demand that voters are given a voice on the ultimate Brexit deal.