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Friends of the Earth's Big Ask campaign gets climate change bill into Queen's speech


The announcement of a climate change bill in the Queens Speech was
welcomed by Friends of the Earth today (15 November). The environmental group, which has led the call for new climate legislation through The Big Ask campaign, also said that the proposed new Bill must include annual targets for cutting carbon dioxide.

Radiohead's Thom Yorke launched The Big Ask campaign in May 2005. Since then over 100,000 people from across the country have taken action in support of the need for a climate change law that will commit the UK to making annual cuts in its carbon dioxide emissions of at least three percent.

All the main opposition parties have backed the bill and 412 MPs -almost two thirds of MPs overall, and a majority in every party sitting in
Parliament - have signed a Parliamentary petition (Early Day Motion 178) calling for new legislation "so that annual cuts in carbon dioxide
emissions of three per cent can be delivered."

Friends of the Earth Director, Tony Juniper said:

"We are delighted that a Climate Change Bill was announced in today's
Queen's Speech - this is something Friends of the Earth has been
campaigning for through The Big Ask climate campaign. The Bill is a
crucial first step in ensuring the UK plays its part in keeping
temperatures below danger levels.  The next step is to ensure the Bill
delivers the cuts that are needed through the introduction of annual
targets for reducing the UK's carbon dioxide emissions."

Johnny Borrell, lead singer of Razorlight who emailed his MP about the
need for a climate change law said:

"This is fantastic news for everyone who supported The Big Ask, Friends of the Earth's campaign for a climate change law. This includes
thousands of Razorlight fans who have taken time out to write to their
MP.  We will be keeping an eye on what happens next to make sure that the Bill really makes a real difference."

David Miliband, Secretary of State for the Environment said:

"Friends of the Earth have played a big role in pressing the case for
action on climate change. Today's Bill is a big step forward in tackling climate change and we will work with them and many others to make sure it works"

Notes to editors

For more information or to arrange an interview please contact the
Friends of the Earth Press Office on 0207 566 1649.

Pictures and footage of The Big Ask Campaign are also available.  VNR shot list includes:

GVs and IV Radiohead's Thom Yorke launching The Big Ask
GVs The Big Ask Live - concert featuring Thom Yorke, Gruff Rhys from
Super Furry Animals, Kate Rusby and Simon Amstell
The Big Ask cinema ad - shows children asking questions about climate
change, has been show in 200 + cinemas across the UK
The Big Ask viral - shows MP in bondage, has been viewed on line by
100,000 +

For more information on The Big Ask campaign go to: www.thebigask.com

Friends of the Earth is a member of the Stop Climate Chaos coalition
which brings together environment and development organisations, unions, faith, community and women's groups. The coalition's campaign, "I Count" is designed to inspire personal and political action and counter the view that climate change is too big a problem to fix. More information at: icount.org.uk