Press Release: UK Youth meet Nick Hurd MP on day of government’s Paris Agreement ratification

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The UK Youth Climate Coalition (UKYCC) has called on the UK climate change minister to boost the country’s ambition as the country ratified the Paris Agreement during the climate talks in Marrakesh.

The UK is the 111th country to ratify the agreement and although UKYCC welcomes the move, it is calling on the UK government to align its international commitments to its domestic policies.

UKYCC now wants to see the UK government taking active steps to deliver on the science and spirit of the Paris Agreement.

The delegation met with climate change minister Nick Hurd this morning and urged him to align UK emissions targets with 1.5C.

This includes:

  • A ban on fracking in the UK
  • Phasing out fossil fuel subsidies
  • Re-introducing renewable energy subsidies
  • Overturning the decision to build a third runway at Heathrow and opposing any further airport expansion.
  • Ratifying the second commitment period of the Kyoto Protocol, also known as the Doha Amendment. As Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) only in start in 2020 pre-2020 ambitions must be urgently increased if we are to remain below 1.5C.
  • Put in place the adequate programmes to communicate the urgency of climate change to British citizens
  • Appoint an ACE focal point, whose role will be to set-up a network of climate change professional and ensure that awareness programmes are as effective and targeted as they can be.
  • Work towards producing a robust conflict of interest policy within the UNFCCC.
  • Go beyond the 2050 roadmap commitments to deliver finance for adaptation, mitigation and loss and damage for the UK to become a climate finance champion.

During a meeting on climate finance at the climate talks in Marrakesh, climate change minister Nick Hurd said: “We have to be clear that this $100bn is a stump – it is clearly not enough we need to mobilise significantly more money than that. We have to turn the billions into trillions.”

UKYCC delegate Pandora Batra said: “This was a great opportunity to make our voices heard especially on the day when the UK ratified the Paris Agreement. We welcome the UK’s renewed commitments towards implementing the Paris Agreement, however, this alone is not enough. Ratification has opened the door to a sustainable future but the UK government has yet to walk through. It needs to prove it is serious about climate action and align its domestic policies with its climate commitments. We agreed to continue working together back in the UK to enhance youth participation.”

 Context

Recently, the UK’s has slashed subsidies for renewable energies while granting generous tax breaks to oil and fracking industries; it has given the go-ahead to fracking sites in rural Lancashire overturning the decision of the local government and for a third runway at Heathrow airport. Prior to voting to leave the EU, it lobbied Brussels to prevent a ban on state-aid fossil fuels subsidies.

If it wants to be serious about climate change, the UK government needs to revise its domestic policies on energy and transport and do it fast.

Although the UK has reduced emissions since 1990, government climate advisors believe the government is not on track to meet its future targets, including reaching 15% of renewable energy by 2020.

 Notes to Editor:

Please find attached a picture of the UKYCC delegation with UK climate change minister Nick Hurd at COP22.

The UK Youth Climate Coalition is one of the most exciting, innovative, energised and passionate organisations campaigning on climate change in the UK and around the world. We are an organisation entirely made of young people (18-29) based in the UK who volunteer their time to fight climate change issues.

For any further information, contact chloe.farand@ukycc.org

SAMSUNG CSC

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UK youth hold up signs at COP22 with the UK’s to-do list.