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Keir Starmer

Climate love

Keir Starmer to ‘throw everything’ at plan to get UK to net zero

Keir Starmer will pledge to “throw everything” at net zero and the overhaul of the UK’s energy system and industries, promising new jobs in “the race of our lifetime” to a low-carbon future. The Labour leader will seek to regain the initiative on his plan for green growth on Monday, having rowed back earlier this month on a pledge to invest £28bn in a green industrial strategy, a figure that will not now be reached until the second half of a Labour parliament, as well as damaging rows with trade unions over the future of the North Sea. Announcing a package of policies designed to decarbonise the energy system and industry, Starmer will say: “We’re going to throw everything at this: planning reform, procurement, long-term finance, R&D, a strategic plan for skills and supply chains … Pulling together for a simple, unifying priority: British power for British jobs.” Labour’s plans include sweeping changes to the planning system that will allow onshore wind farms, electricity lines, transport links and other low-carbon infrastructure to be built quickly. All regulators will be given instructions to prioritise low-carbon projects, and companies will be given assurances on long-term policy to encourage investment. Speaking in Scotland, Starmer will contrast the opportunities for investing in a low-carbon economy with the devastation of the UK’s industrial heartlands under Margaret Thatcher. “This cannot be a re-run of the 1980s,” he will say. “This is the race of our lifetime, and the prize is real.” Labour’s plans for renewable energy, including a ban on new oil and gas exploration and development in the North Sea, have come under attack, from the Conservatives and trade unions. Grant Shapps, the energy secretary, accused the Labour leader of being “the political wing” of Just Stop Oil. Starmer will counter by arguing net zero is vital to the UK’s safety. “We live in an increasingly volatile world. The twin risks of climate change and energy security now threaten the stability of nations,” he will say. “So we’ve got to ground everything we do in a new insight – that clean energy is now essential for national security team also rebuffed suggestions of a U-turn on the North Sea oil ban. Rescinding permission for projects that have cleared all regulatory hurdles before the general election would be costly and legally complex, so the party’s proposed ban on new oilfields will not cover projects that have achieved all three levels of consent, for exploration, development and production. It is unlikely that many of the more than 100 North Sea licences the government is mulling would fall into that category, though one of the biggest – the Rosebank oil and gas field – could clear the final regulatory hurdles soon. Labour’s plans also include insulating 19 million homes, setting up a national energy company, decarbonising electricity supply by 2030 and a national wealth fund to invest in green infrastructure. Ed Miliband, the shadow secretary for climate change and net zero, told the Guardian the package would transform the UK’s economy. “This is a transformative agenda to bring lower bills, more jobs, energy security and climate leadership,” he said. “Labour is seizing the future, in stark contrast to the Tories, who have abandoned the pitch on this agenda.” New analysis by Carbon Brief found less gas would be imported by 2030 under Labour’s plans than under Tory policies, despite the proposed ban on new North Sea drilling. fb-messenger://share?

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  • George Kariuki

    52 w

    It is important to address any concerns and find common ground to ensure a fair and equitable approach to the green transformation.

    • Kevin

      52 w

      Leaders like this inspire younger generations of climate champions

      • Annett Michuki..

        52 w

        these are the kind of leaders we need today

        • Gorffly mokua

          52 w

          He is one of the few leaders who have vowed to ensure that net zero is achieved.

          • Tabitha Kimani

            52 w

            We need leaders who are conscious of the effects of climate change and how to mitigate the crisis for the sake of life on earth.

            • Johannes Luiga

              52 w

              Good political leadership

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