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Response to the 29/10/07
Command Paper on the Climate Change Bill

MEDIA STATEMENT 29/10/07
in response to today’s publication of Command Paper on the Climate Change Bill

I COUNT - the UK’s largest coalition on climate change
VERDICT: GOVERNMENT PLANS NOT BOLD ENOUGH TO STOP CLIMATE CHAOS  

Artic polar bear envoys, on behalf of I Count - the UK’s largest campaign on climate change - listened with interest and disappointment to the Government’s Command Paper announcement at Kew Gardens today, which indicates their carbon dioxide emission reduction targets for the draft Climate Change Bill.

The Government announced its proposals for the Climate Change Bill as recommended by the Command Paper which includes at least a 60% cut in carbon emissions by 2050.   I Count are asking that the legislation adopt the widely accepted 2C global warming danger threshold and cut CO2 emissions by at least 80% by 2050. 

Ashok Sinha, Director for I Count said: “We warmly welcome the commitment to review the UK’s CO2 emission targets including emissions from aviation and shipping, however, the science is strong enough to take these steps now and put an 80% target on the face of the Climate Change Bill”.

“The Climate Change Bill offers a massive opportunity to legally commit the UK to cutting carbon emissions and set an example to the world - but only if it’s tough enough. Government plans announced today will mean a 60% carbon emission reduction target by 2050 equating to a 4C rise in temperatures. This figure will not stop climate chaos. An 80% reduction target is needed to keep within the widely accepted global warming danger threshold of 2C and nothing less is going to work”.

For interview and further information contact Alison Blower on 07967 698928.
Images of I Count polar bears at Parliament, Whitehall and Kew Garden are available on request.

Please note that polar Bears and supporters of I Count - the UK’s largest coalition on climate change - visited Downing Street this morning to hand in 150,000 petition cards demanding the UK Government do all it can to stop climate chaos. 

ENDS


Notes to Editors:

1. I Count is the campaign of the Stop Climate Chaos coalition - showing the public and politicians that all our actions to reduce carbon emissions count.  We are the largest campaign on climate change and together we are millions of people and counting. www.icount.org.uk.

Alison Blower Media Coordinator - I Count campaign
Email: [email protected] Tel: 0207729 8732 Mob: 07967 698928

2. Climate Change Bill
The Climate Change Bill will be introduced to Parliament in the Queen’s Speech on November 6th and be the first of its kind in the world. The first draft of the legislation was introduced by Government in March following pressure from I Count and other climate campaigners.  The Bill is likely to receive a second reading in December before being voted on by MPs in Spring 2008.  During the crucial next six months, I Count supporters and local groups from member organisations will be lobbying their MPs to ensure the UK delivers a bold Bill which keeps the UK within the global warming danger warming threshold of 2C with the following:
a. Increase the carbon dioxide reduction target, from 60% to at least 80 % by 2050.
b. Ensure that emissions from international aviation & shipping are included in the reduction targets.
c. Set binding carbon budgets with annual milestones, to make sure that emissions reductions are on track.

3. Why the Bill needs an 80% carbon reduction limit.
If industrialised countries only delivered a 60% CO2 reduction and ignored aviation and shipping then we would be looking at a temperature rise amounting to  4C or more global warming according to The Tyndall Centre.  Industrialised countries must deliver at least an 80% cut in CO2 if global warming is to be kept under  2C.  The Stern Review and the IPCC clearly state that an increase of 2C degrees or more will result in severe impacts such as the collapse of the Amazonian rainforest, the onset of irreversible melting of the Greenland ice sheet and the beginning of more than one billion people suffering water shortages . This also means that 15% to 40% of species will potentially face extinction and in southern Europe, crop yields will decline by 20%.   

4.  I Count members include: Friends of the Earth, Christian Aid, Greenpeace, Oxfam, People & Planet, National Federation of Women’s Institutes, RSPB, Tearfund, World Wide Fund for Nature - UK (Board members), A Rocha, ACTSA, Action Aid, Airport Watch, BMS World Mission, CAFOD, Campaign against Climate Change, Campaign to Protect Rural England, Carplus, Climate Outreach and Information Network, Come off It, Ethical Consumer, Ethical Jobs, From Greenhouse to Green House, Garden Organic, Glasgow Eco-Renovation Network, Global Student Forum, Green TV, Islamic Foundation for Ecology and Environmental Science, Islamic Relief, Medact, National Commission for Justice and Peace, The National Trust for Scotland, Operation Noah, Plan B, Practical Action, Road Block, SAOCC, Save our World, SCIAF (Scottish Action on Climate Change), Shared Energy, SPEAK, Spokes, Surfers Against Sewage, Sustrans, Take Global Warming Seriously, The Wildlife Trusts, Transport 2000, UNA, Unison, Women's Environmental Network, Woodland Trust, World Development Movement, Youth Against Climate Change.