Northern Ireland news

Mass virtual lobby of MPs over climate change

A recent poll suggested 74 per cent of people in Northern Ireland are in favour of a Climate Change Act

A virtual mass lobby of MPs will take place next week as people from Northern Ireland join thousands demanding a `green recovery'.

`The Time Is Now' is being held on Tuesday to give constituents the opportunity to connect with their local MP over Zoom.

Organised by The Climate Coalition, the meetings will focus on `how the government can create a more resilient economy post Covid-19, putting the climate crisis and nature emergency at the heart of greener, fairer recovery plans'.

It says "MPs from all major parties have been invited to take part".

According to figures from the Department for Agriculture, Environment and Rural Affairs, Northern Ireland is falling further behind other regions of the UK in its commitment to reduce greenhouse gases and tackle the climate crisis.

The report shows that emissions fell by two per cent from 2017 to 2018, to a level 20 per cent below the base year of 1990.

Between 1990 and 2018 England reduced emissions by 46 per cent, Scotland by 45 per cent and Wales by 31 per cent.

A recent poll suggested almost three-quarters of people in Northern Ireland are in favour of a Climate Change Act and two-thirds want Northern Ireland to have a target to reach net zero emissions by 2045.

Jonathan Bell of RSPB NI said the charity "is delighted to support The Climate Coalition in this mass lobby".

"As we emerge from the pandemic it is vital that we put addressing the climate and nature crisis at the heart of the recovery process.

"This is everyone's chance to unite and call for our political representatives to ensure that Northern Ireland does not fall further behind in delivery of the UK's climate commitments.

"The pandemic has shown us that society can act swiftly and with purpose to address a crisis. The same level of political will and determination will be essential to safeguard nature and maintain a safe climate for everyone."

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