Jeremy Corbyn, Ian Blackford, Vince Cable, Liz Saville-Roberts and Caroline Lucas
On Tuesday 23rd April 2019, sparked by the visit of Greta Thunberg to the UK, the Westminster leaders of the UK political parties, except for the Prime Minister, took part in a private round-table with a number of the leaders of the youth climate strikes to discuss the UK’s response to the deteriorating ecological crises.
At that meeting, the Westminster Leaders present agreed to three actions. These actions mark a significant cross-party response to Greta’s visit to the UK; the UK youth climate strikes and ongoing climate protests; the IPCC’s Special Report on 1.5 Degrees; the upcoming Committee on Climate Change report on a net-zero greenhouse gas target for the UK on May 2nd; and above all, the knowledge that it is young people across the world who will bear the brunt of the climate crisis.
There is an open invitation for the Government, and all other political parties, to sign-up to these cross-party actions.
Ongoing Cross-Party Cooperation & Dialogue with Young People
By working together collaboratively, political parties, even without the Government, can start to build the bold solutions and public consent needed to ensure young people are guaranteed a secure, safe and prosperous future.
Westminster party leaders therefore agree to ongoing cross-party roundtables with the youth climate strikers - and to increased cross-party collaboration on climate change, including an agreement to issue a statement endorsing the UK’s bid to host COP26 in 2020.
Supporting the UK Youth Climate Assemblies
Over the coming months, the UK youth climate strikers will continue to expand and build their movement - and it is essential that the views of young people are incorporated into the decision-making of politicians and political parties and that politicians have chance to engage directly with young people across the UK.
Westminster party leaders therefore agree to actively support and engage with youth climate assemblies in towns and cities across the UK.
Stress-Test UK Climate Policy
The United Kingdom has signed and ratified the Paris Climate Agreement - the international treaty negotiated in 2015 part of the United Nations’ climate framework - which places a commitment on the UK to meet the targets in the Paris Agreement, including efforts to keep global warming to 1.5 degrees celsius.
Westminster party leaders therefore agree, as a minimum, to accept and meet the imminent recommendation of the Committee on Climate Change on net-zero - and that they will seek a common framework to ensure party policy and manifestos are in line with CCC recommendations and the Paris Climate Agreement.
Alongside these initial actions, the Party Leaders reiterated their support for lowering the voting age to 16 and to ensure that knowledge and information about the causes and solutions to the ecological crises are at the heart of our education system.