A commitment to Britain’s climate change agenda has been made despite fears of a severe downturn in the world economy.
The UK’s new energy and climate change secretary, Ed Miliband, said many of the new jobs of the future will be green jobs,
adding that the cost to taxpayers of failing to fix the environment will only be higher if it is not tackled now.
He said: “The central argument of the Stern report is that the costs of not acting are worse than the costs of acting, and the longer you leave it, the worse it gets in terms of the costs. So I don’t think there is an option not to act.
“It would not be true to say that after the events of the past three weeks that climate change is at the front of millions of people’s minds. But politics is about leadership and that means saying this is an incredibly important issue not just for us but for our children.
By the end of the year the EU must reach agreement on the 2020 package on renewables and energy efficiency. That is how we can send a signal that we can get an agreement on a worldwide UN deal in Copenhagen at the end of next year.
“If the EU sticks to its guns and says we will hold to our climate change commitments that will have an impact on other countries. If it looks like we are retreating, it will also have an impact.”