John Ashton gave a speech at TUC Climate Change conference on 21st October 2013. The speech, entitled 'Sun on the Tyne: Climate, Industry and the Just Struggle' called for more climate action across the world and specifically the UK.
In the speech he describes a 'new Britain', a Britain as drastically changed by the low carbon economy, as it was transformed between the 1930's and the 1950's.
An economy, above all, with a completely overhauled energy system. Carbon neutral electricity, generated increasingly with renewables, much of it by communities. A modern power grid managing demand and carrying power to and from the rest of Europe to smooth out fluctuations. The electrification of transport and heating gathering pace.
Some of John's biggest call to actions on climate include:
- An end to uncertainty. Get decarbonisation and renewables targets in place in Britain and the EU so that investors have confidence.
- Make Britain a world leader in CCS so we can keep carbon intensive industries in the country.
- Liberating the Green Investment Bank so that it can borrow.
- Make sure European grid infrastructure is designed for efficiency and renewables.
- Restore confidence in politics.
During the speech and after there was a really postive reaction on Twitter which can be seen below. A full version of John's speech can also be downloaded here.