Veteran conservative MP John Gummer played to the crowd using his experience as Britain’s longest serving environment secretary.

But he was up against strong opposition in the form of Labour’s Colin Challen, a member of the Environmental Audit Select Committee.

As well as local favourite Lib Dem candidate for Solihull, which includes the NEC where the debate took place, Lorely Burt.

Mr Gummer, who claimed large expenses for amongst other things removal of mole hills on his large estate, was in good form explaining how he convinced then prime minister Margaret Thatcher about the potential dangers of global warming.

He said: “I said to her I believe in global warming, but I’m sure how many of my cabinet colleagues do.

“She replied that she agreed making two members of the cabinet in favour and that was therefore a majority.”

Ms Burt attacked the failure of the Copenhagen climate change talks, saying: “We regretted the limited scope of the Copenhagen Accord.”

And promised more investment in renewable adding: “We’ll make sure 40% of Britain’s power comes from renewables.”

Labour’s Colin Challen said he thought a Lib/Lab pact ‘might be quite a good response to the development of climate change policy’.

He said: “We’re commited to a 34% cut in emissions by 2020 and we want Europe to go beyond its current commitments, which would mean for the UK something like a 40% reduction.

“We would like the European Union to go from its 20% to a 30% target by 2030.”

Judge for yourself by viewing the videos below:

The Lib Dem view –

The Labour view –

The Conservative view –

Luke Walsh

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