Douglas Ross MP, Support the Climate & Ecological Emergency Bill!

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We, the undersigned, call on Douglas Ross, MP for Moray and Leader of the Scottish Conservative & Unionist Party, to support the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, which aims to help the UK Government to play its fair and proper role in limiting global warming to 1.5°C (as per our international commitments) and actively conserve the natural world by protecting and restoring the UK’s ecosystems. 

By supporting the bill, Douglas Ross has an opportunity to ensure that:

  • The UK's entire carbon footprint is taken into account, including all of the emissions linked to the production and transport of our imports and exports.
  • We don’t depend on future, as yet undeveloped, technology to save the day.
  • We focus on nature as much as climate, protecting and conserving habitats in the UK and internationally through our supply chains.
  • Citizens are central to deciding how to move forward, in a Citizen's Assembly with real teeth.

For decades, scientists and climate experts have been alerting us to the dangers of global heating and biodiversity loss. In 2018, the UN’s IPCC warned that we had just 12 years to limit global warming to a manageable 1.5°C above pre-industrial levels to avoid climate catastrophe [1].

Despite this, global warming is on track to reach >4°C by the end of the century [2], i.e. in our children's lifetimes.

This is a rise and rate of change humankind has never before experienced and its consequences will be devastating and completely destabilising to our security and wellbeing. We are in grave danger: facing “a man-made disaster on a global scale” (Sir David Attenborough); a “direct existential threat” (Antonio Guterres, UN Secretary-General).

Douglas Ross has stated that he is deeply concerned about the climate and ecological crises.

Already in Moray, people have been affected by flooding; wildfires; the UK's terrible wheat crop in 2020 (down by 40% due to extreme weather events [3]); and the Covid-19 pandemic, which was made far more likely by the reckless ways in which we are exploiting the world’s finite natural resources, as well as our patterns of international travel [4].

The UK Parliament and Mr Ross's own government have also recognised the danger [5]. However, the UK Government has continually failed to meet almost all of its climate targets and the Committee on Climate Change recently found the Government’s steps to tackle the environmental crisis to be woefully inadequate [6]. This is why we need stronger legislation in place to help governments over the next few critical decades to meet the UK's commitments. Hard decisions are required, and these are not always easy to push for amidst the short-term political drive to be popular that is the down-side of our 5 year electoral cycle. Binding legislation can help support governments to take those decisions and stick to them, even at times when they lack large majorities.

The Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill is a private members' bill gathering increasing cross-party support. Drawn up in collaboration with lawyers and eminent climate scientists, it offers a clear vision and strategy to help the Government contribute to its fair share of limiting global warming to 1.5°C and restore biodiversity and ecosystems. It also calls for deliberative democracy, in the form of a Citizen's Assembly, to secure public engagement and support for this huge task.

As hosts of the next COP26, the UK Government has pledged to provide climate leadership and to set an example to encourage other countries to raise the ambition of their climate targets. 

We are asking Mr Ross, as our elected representative in Moray and leader of the Scottish Conservatives, to show the kind of leadership required by committing to The CEE Bill, in order to tackle the greatest challenge humankind has ever faced. The full bill and further information can be found at www.CEEBill.uk

We have so little time left. Please be courageous, Mr Ross, and vote with your heart. 

Thank you,

Concerned constituents of Moray and Scotland

[1] https://www.vox.com/2018/10/8/17948832/climate-change-global-warming-un-ipcc-report

[2] https://climateactiontracker.org/global/temperatures/

[3] (On average, 1970-2016) https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-54357899

[4] See David Attenborough’s ‘Extinction: The Facts’ for more on this - https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000mn4n - as well as https://news.un.org/en/story/2020/09/1072292 and https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/oct/29/protecting-nature-vital-pandemics-report-outbreaks-wild?CMP=share_btn_tw

[5] The UK Parliament declared an environment and climate emergency in 2019 and Boris Johnson has spoken of the need for a green recovery on several occasions.

[6] https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2020/jun/21/britain-still-failing-on-climate-crisis-warn-advisers