When it comes to energy and climate change the common assumption used to be that publics have a deficit of understanding to be corrected with improved communication or bypassed altogether. Climate change is so urgent we need to put democracy on hold, some said. Such perspectives still persist of course, but it is now more commonly accepted that achieving net zero depends on the meaningful engagement of society. Citizen engagement is central to programmes for achieving net zero across a number of countries, as well as global processes in the lead up to COP26. Many now say we need more not less democracy in tackling problems of energy and climate change. These are vital and encouraging developments. However, the received wisdom that often underpins drives towards public engagement also has its problems. These problems can hold back low carbon transitions, certainly ones that are just.
Nature 9th March 2021 read more »
Ed Miliband: As shadow business secretary, I am struck by the deep consensus among British businesses that our national economy has been held back for too long by a refusal to do what is in the economic DNA of other major economies including Germany, France and the US. I am referring here to industrial strategy, where the government actively identifies how to build resilience and success in sectors which are critical to our national future, by setting a clear mission and through a combination of public and private investment. We face enormous challenges as a country to recover from Covid, to tackle the deep inequalities across our country, to lead in the industries of the future, to meet the climate challenge. Neither the market on its own nor government on its own can deliver. As the Tories leave the field, Labour is determined to be the home of industrial strategy, based on that partnership. There are some key areas where this needs to happen. The pre-eminent test is around the climate challenge. We see some governments around the world rising to the challenge of the climate emergency with industrial policies and investment to create jobs, support businesses, and help industries decarbonise, thus increasing their long-term security and competitiveness.
Times 10th March 2021 read more »