Monday, November 13, 2006
Tony Blair faces a major Commons revolt over his refusal to commit Britain to annual cuts in the amount of carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere.This may well being the Indie flying a kite since their editorial position on everything Luddite is well known however if the Tories were to grab the bait the government could well be forced to give in or defeated.
The opposition parties and more than 200 Labour MPs have demanded that the Climate Change Bill, which will be announced in this week's Queen's Speech, include a promise to reduce C02 emissions by 3 per cent each year.
But the Prime Minister is resisting the demands, insisting that annual legally-binding targets would be too inflexible. He argues that without "pretty heavy" tax measures an unusually cold winter would scupper hopes of achieving that year's planned reduction.
Without a compromise, the Government looks certain to trigger a rebellion on a scale that could wipe out its majority.
Bearing in mind the obvious public disquiet about Stern & its costs & open opposition from such luminaries as Nigel Lawson the long term risks to the Tories of putting their feet so firmly on the plank of global warming could be very damaging if either no other countries follow suit or global temperatures do not resume an upward trend (or even fall) . We already have the Tories & Labour switching places on the nuclear issue & could now see them absolutely committed to sharply increased CO2 taxes leaving Blair looking the more moderate. There has always been a suspicion that Cameron's commitment to Greenery was because it must be electorally advantageous because everybody else is doing the same. However, while everybody makes noises about being in favour of having an environment, when asked what is the most important issue, let alone whether they want to pay, there is a noticeable lack of enthusiasm. The Tories may be in danger of enthusiastically seizing the lead on "environmentalism" just at a time when the crowds are shuffling in other directions leaving them only leading the uncertain support of the media types who pushed it in the first place.
I think they would be wise not make common cause with Michael Meacher & the usual suspects here.