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UK Prime Minister discusses climate energy at Tory Party conference

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Boris Johnson

Today, UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s speech to the Tory Party Conference majored on climate energy. This is the first time there has been a party conference speech with such a focus by the leader of a major political party in Britain.

There have been other major green speeches by political party leaders on this, but not at a party conference where the parties are talking to themselves as well as the public. This is where the major parties set out their political priorities, not just their policy goals.

The speech shows the extent to which climate change has graduated from the green ghetto to the political mainstream. The speech mainlined on the promise of offshore wind.

Here is a reaction from our Chairman, Tom Burke:

“The Prime Minister is right to recognise the vast potential of off-shore wind in the UK to be good for both the climate and the economy.

As the recent Citizen’s Assembly on climate showed this will be very popular with the public.

But he does need to be careful not to overpromise – the wind blows everywhere and many other countries are ahead of us in making the technology – so we will  not become a new Saudi Arabia.

We do, however, have some of the world’s best offshore wind resources in accessible waters.

Realising this potential will require very  large scale investment from the private sector.

There is no doubt that this investment is readily available if our overall energy policy is credible.

Unfortunately, it is not at the moment.

Recent media coverage shows a real danger of the Prime Minister promising all things to all men.

This is simply not credible to the investment community and so creates a risk that in trying to do all of the above and please everyone you end up not doing enough of anything.”

Listen to Tom interviewed on BBC World Service.

Photo by Number 10 on Flickr.

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