It was yesterday revealed that the UK Government has cut the number of Foreign Office staff working on climate change.
The findings, revealed in the Guardian, showed that the number of staff working full-time on climate change in the UK base of the Foreign Office has fallen by over two-thirds in the past three years.
The announcement comes less than a month after the UK ratified the Paris Agreement, which requires countries to curb carbon emissions in an effort to limit global temperature rises.
The decision to cut staff working on climate change sends a worrying message over how serious the UK Government is taking the threat of climate change. At a time when urgent action is needed from reduce carbon emissions and act on climate change, it is disappointing to see such weak climate leadership from the UK Government.
A spokesperson for the Government is quoted today as saying “The UK’s commitment and leadership on climate action is as strong as ever”; yet the short-sighted decision to cut jobs in the Foreign Office sends the complete opposite signal.
Theresa May and the UK Government now need to realise the urgency and scale of the problem that climate change presents for the UK and increase government support for climate action. Creating jobs relating to climate change needs to be a priority, not cutting them.