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Date posted: 2 December 2020
Steph Lake explains the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill.
The Climate and Ecological Emergency (CEE) Bill has been written by an alliance of scientists, lawyers, academics and activists, orchestrated by the CEE Alliance, in an attempt to push the government to ACT and ACT NOW on the climate crisis!
This new bill, which at the time of writing has the cross-party support of 84 MP’s and has been tabled in the Commons, seeks to ensure that the government and local authorities aren’t just making hollow environmental pledges, but that they have a comprehensive, resourced and urgent plan.
Its aim, according to Kumi Naidoo, former International Executive Director of Greenpeace International and Secretary General of Amnesty International, is simple, to outline “the path needed to avoid the catastrophe outlined by the United Nations… it is farsighted, aiming to protect those at risk now and in the future.” He believes that, ‘the urgency and scale of the response required to tackle the emergency facing life on Earth is in this bill.’
The bill is continuing to gather support from a broad range of campaign groups, businesses, charities and individuals, with Operation Noah adding its name to the list.
What will the CEE Bill do?
The Bill will set an emergency path for the UK to follow and takes a holistic approach to tackling both the climate emergency and the ecological emergency.
Leadership at COP26
In the lead up to COP 26, which will be hosted in Glasgow in November 2021, it is essential that the UK government takes a lead on the climate crisis. The UK must take responsibility for its contribution to the climate crisis, as we are disproportionately responsible for both historic and existing emissions and, therefore, need to move furthest and fastest in our response. The CEE bill will allow us to do this.
Do we need another climate bill?
At a recent CEE Alliance webinar, Caroline Lucas Green MP for Brighton and Hove alerted us to the fact that “every warning light on the dashboard is flashing red” when it comes to the climate crisis. The CEE Bill is needed to build on the success of the Climate Change Act 2008.
She emphasised that the existing \Climate Change Act is not ambitious or comprehensive enough for the scale of action needed. The science has moved on and our position concerning tipping points, global emissions and rising temperatures is so much worse than it was when the CCA bill was first passed over a decade ago.
The UK government has pledged to be carbon zero by 2050, but 2050 is too late. According to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), if we halve emissions global by 2030 and reach net zero by 2050 we have a 50:50 chance of limiting warming to 1.5°. This is no better than flipping a coin!
What can you do?
The CEE bill needs to be made law, only then can its brilliant pledges be put into action!
Join the campaign by signing up at the CEE website where you can find out more about how you can lobby your MP and local authority.