5 Letter 17/06

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I extend my heartfelt congratulations on your recent electoral victory. This achievement is a clear reflection of the trust and expectations your constituents have placed in you. As you embark on this important journey, I implore you to prioritise the urgent issue of climate change, which demands immediate and resolute action.

It is deeply concerning that Labour’s current measures to combat climate change are insufficient. The decision to abandon the policy of allocating £28bn annually to a green investment plan is a significant reversal. The United Nations’ weather agency has cautioned that we are approaching the critical 1.5C global heating threshold, and the World Meteorological Organization has confirmed that 2023 was the hottest year on record. Alarming trends such as rising greenhouse gas emissions, ocean heat, and sea levels have reached unprecedented levels, with extreme weather events documented across all inhabited continents.

Investing in climate change mitigation now is not only an environmental imperative but also an economic strategy. Proactive measures today can prevent severe economic repercussions in the future and shield vulnerable communities from the escalating impacts of climate change. The nearly 50% increase in renewable energy capacity in 2023 showcases that progress is possible. However, it is essential that we sustain and accelerate this momentum. I urge you to champion robust climate policies and reconsider the decision to scale back green investment. The future of our planet and the welfare of future generations depend on the actions we take now.

Climate scientist Friederike Otto has stressed the necessity of halting fossil fuel combustion to prevent further deterioration. The extreme temperatures at the start of 2024 may signal an unexpected acceleration of the climate crisis. Andreas Fink has noted that extreme years like 2023 are foreseeable in current climate models. Simon Lewis has described the state of the climate as an “accelerating crisis” with worsening impacts imminent. Marine heatwaves affected one-third of the world’s oceans daily in 2023, damaging ecosystems and food systems. Climate change has exacerbated extreme weather events, heightening acute food insecurity for 333 million people, predominantly in Africa and South Asia. It is crucial that we confront these challenges with the urgency they demand.

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