Cross-party coalition of UK policymakers pledge joint action to tackle climate misinformation

Pictured: Net-Zero Review author Chris Skidmore MP

The pledge, dubbed as “taking the heat out of local climate action”, has been co-ordinated by UK100, a cross-party network of local leaders committed to tackling climate change, and Net-Zero Review author Chris Skidmore’s Mission Zero Coalition.

Signatories include Cllr Richard Clewer, leader of Wiltshire Council and UK100’s co-president, alongside leaders from Manchester City Council, Warwickshire County Council, North Norfolk District Council and Lewes District Council. The pledge is open for additional signatories.

The pledge outlines key commitments, including prioritising climate action above party politics, supporting evidence-based discussions to counter misinformation and working in partnership with the Government, businesses and civil society to deliver inclusive solutions.

Additionally, local leaders have committed to engaging residents, civil society and businesses in co-designing local climate action plans, and to continuously scrutinising climate action efforts to improve delivery.

Skidmore said: “Local authorities are the unsung heroes of the net-zero transition. Day in, day out, they are delivering the practical changes we need to see, from upgrading homes to improving public transport.

“But they can’t do it alone. This pledge sends a powerful message that local leaders are united in their commitment to tackling the climate crisis. Now we need to see that same spirit of collaboration from Westminster, with a clear policy and funding framework to empower local delivery.”

This joint pledge comes at a time as the UK prepares for what industry experts anticipate being its first “net-zero election” in 2024.

A stride to combat misinformation

Earlier this year, research found that while eight in 10 Britons are worried about climate change, less than a third are confident that the Government will deliver policies to transition to net-zero by 2050.

With public concern about climate change on the rise, the new initiative aims to send a signal of commitment from local leaders towards tackling the climate crisis.

UK100 emphasises that local authorities need to serve as trusted sources of information and drivers of tangible progress, in order to tackle challenges such as wavering government support and the spread of misinformation.

UK100’s chief executive Christopher Hammond said: “The journey to net-zero isn’t going to be easy. But that’s not a reason for inaction, indulging in scare campaigns, or pitting communities against each other.

“If we do not slow misinformation, misinformation will slow net-zero.

“With the 2024 local elections poised to be a defining moment for climate action, now is the time for local authorities to send a clear message that they are leading the way for a better climate debate.”

Related news: Local authorities’ net-zero plans ‘strangled’ by UK Government’s inadequate funding pots

Comments (2)

  1. Peter Banks says:

    Hugely encouraging and hopeful. Overdue, however, long may it continue!

  2. Graham Crane says:

    A pity we haven’t adopted the necessary policies for the last 10 years.

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