Climate and Ecological Emergency supporters drop banners in Dacorum calling for local MPs to back the bill

Both the local MPs said tackling climate change remains a priority

By Holly Patel
Friday, 26th March 2021, 5:03 pm
Updated Friday, 26th March 2021, 5:04 pm

Volunteers from Dacorum Climate Network, supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency (CEE) Bill, hosted several Covid-compliant banner drops in Dacorum today (March 26) calling on MPs Gagan Mohindra and Sir Mike Penning to back the CEE Bill.

As part of nationwide action, a banner appeared over the A41 at Tring Park early this morning, until it was moved to fencing on the Moor, Berkhamsted - the site of the temporary car park.

Another was hung down the green wall of Berkhamsted's multi-storey car park before being moved to hang above the Marlowes in Hemel.

Volunteers supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, hosted a banner in Tring

The Gravel Path bridge over the canal was chosen as a Berkhamsted banner location, while in Tring another banner appeared on the high street near the Robin Hood roundabout.

Notices invited residents to sign petitions to their MP, or email them.

Kathryn Salway, of Dacorum Climate Network, said: "We all need to tell Gagan Mohindra that we need stronger environmental action.

"We’re seeing endless reports coming out, many from the Government’s own committees, highlighting that Boris Johnson isn’t doing enough to tackle the climate and ecological emergency.

A banner was hung off the A41 bridge by volunteers supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill

"This bill would change everything and give us a chance of surviving on this planet."

Today marks the date the CEE Bill was due to have its second reading in the House of Commons. Caroline Lucas MP presented the Bill in Parliament on September 2, 2020.

The CEE Bill was scheduled for debate in the House of Commons on Friday, March 26, but the pandemic impacted parliamentary process, postponing the second reading.

The Bill is currently waiting for a new date to be set, but whatever happens, the CEE Bill will have a very low chance of progressing in this Parliament due to the sheer volume of private members’ bills lined up.

Volunteers supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, hung a banner from the multistorey in Berkhamsted

Sue Hampton, of Dacorum Climate Network, added: "We are inviting both local MPs to have a discussion with their constituents about the CEE Bill – we all feel incredibly passionate about this issue and welcome a forum to discuss our concerns.”

Sir Mike Penning, the MP for Hemel Hempstead, said: “Tackling climate change is a key priority for the UK Government and we can all be proud that the UK was the first G7 country to legislate to achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

"I understand many local people are keen to reach the net zero target sooner and, of course, I would also like to.

"However, aiming for zero emissions within ten years is almost definitely impossible. It would be very disruptive and I can tell you from my mailbox that too harsh penalties would erode public support.

Volunteers supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, placed a banner at the Moor

"One thing is clear, all industries are fully aware of the direction we are heading in and see the business sense in reaching zero emissions well before 2050.

“I support the campaign’s aims to include the UK's entire carbon footprint, including consumption emissions released overseas.

"That is the carbon footprint as a result of goods manufactured overseas for use in the UK.

"I have questioned Ministers about this but at the moment there is no internationally agreed approach to measuring this and estimates are very unreliable.”

Gagan Mohindra MP for south west Hertfordshire also said that tackling climate change remains a priority for him and his parliamentary colleagues.

He said: "While I agree with highlighting the urgent need to tackle climate change and welcome the broader debate and awareness on this issue, I am pleased that the Government is already taking this issue incredibly seriously.

"The work in progress in the run up to COP26 later this year shows the momentum is building on what must be a global solution to a global problem.

"On a more local matter, I fully appreciate concerns about our beautiful Green Belt, of which I too am a passionate advocate.

"Since my election, I continue to raise concerns about protecting our Green Belt. Bad development is a legacy none of us want and is something I will continue to fight against."

The CEE Bill is supported by over 100 MPs from eight political parties - including Labour, SNP, Plaid Cymru, Liberal Democrats and Greens.

The Bill calls on the Government to take account of the UK's entire carbon footprint, to protect nature in the UK and to prevent ecological damage along supply chains. It also establishes a Citizens’ Assembly to ensure that these changes are achieved in a fair and just way.

The CEE Bill sets out a viable roadmap for the UK to play its full and fair role in restoring nature and limiting its emissions.

With eight months to go before the UK hosts the vital UN climate conference, COP26, in Glasgow, the CEE Bill represents Boris Johnson’s last best opportunity of having a serious and comprehensive plan to tackle the greatest challenge humanity faces.