New bill seeks to restore biodiversity in UK

Proposed legislation, the Climate and Ecology Bill, which would put in place climate and biodiversity targets, is going to be introduced in the House of Lords tomorrow.                                                                                                   

The bill will be read out by Liberal Democrat Peer, Lord Redesdale, after receiving support from 120 MPs and 31 Peers from all major parties.

The act, first introduced in 2020, would require the government to publish a strategy to limit global heating to 1.5ºC and fulfil its obligations outlined in the Paris Agreement.

Steps would also need to be taken to restore ecosystems, protect species, avoid deforestation, land degradation and pollution and to stop the use of fossil fuels.

Lord Redesdale, an Energy Spokesperson for the Liberal Democrats between 2000-08, said: ‘It’s a privilege to be steering the all-party back Climate & Ecology Bill through the Lords. Climate change and biodiversity loss are the defining issues of our time and the UK Government just isn’t doing enough. Backed by many of Britain’s leading experts in the scientific community, this Bill has the potential to help save our environment for future generations.’

The proposed legislation states that a Climate and Nature Assembly should be established to represent the population and consider measures recommended by experts.

If 80% of the assembly support the recommendation, then the Secretary of State, currently Priti Patel MP, should try to reach an agreement on whether to include it in the government’s strategy.

The independent body would work alongside the already existing Committee on Climate Change (CCC) or Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC).

Measures introduced under the bill must also have a positive impact on local communities, young people and those living in deprived areas.

Since the strategy would impact the fossil fuels industry, it’s been proposed that financial support should be provided to help retrain people in green skills for new jobs.

Annual reports tracking the government’s progress in achieving environmental targets would be produced too and the latest scientific advice would be used to revise these at any time.

In related news, a new bill, aiming to protect people against air pollution, has been introduced in the House of Lords after being voted top of the ballot for private members’ bills (PMB’s).

Photo by Scotty Turner


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