Caroline Lucas at Climate Camp

South East MEP and Green activist Dr Caroline Lucas will be joining protesters at Climate Camp 2008 this weekend at Kingsnorth in Kent to rally against the Government’s continued commitment to unsustainable fossil fuels and its failure to adapt to tough environmental and economic conditions.

Speaking ahead of the Camp, which was held last year at Heathrow and attracted in excess of 1500 people, Dr Lucas said:

“I am delighted to be taking part in Climate Camp this year, and where better to highlight the Government’s failure to provide leadership on climate change than Kingsnorth, the proposed location for the first coal fired power station in Britain for 30 years.

“A new coal facility at Kingsnorth would emit up to 8 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere each year — and potentially keep doing so for 50 years. That annual emissions figure is as much C02 as the world’s 24 lowest emitting countries combined.

“Despite all its climate rhetoric, greenhouse gas emissions have risen under this Labour adminstration. Any government which commits to more coal fired power stations — and Kingsnorth is only the start — then claims to be aiming for a massive reduction in carbon emissions by 2020 is quite simply living in a fantasy land.”

On Sunday (3 August), Dr Lucas will take part in a rally on incineration and climate change. Then on Monday (4 August), she will address fellow Climate Campers on the triple crisis of food price rises, economic downturn and climate change facing governments the world over, and what lies ahead for conventional capitalist economics.

She continued: “Our political leaders seem unable to grasp a more radical social and environmental agenda. They can no longer commit to endless free market economic growth, which has played a huge part in the rapid generation of damaging climate emissions, and then wring their hands about climate change.

“The Government should be showing real leadership in this debate, with measures to tackle rising energy costs and fuel poverty, as well as initiating major investment in energy efficiency, renewables and decentralised energy. According to its own figures, we could achieve a 30% reduction in energy use in the UK through existing efficiency measures alone.

“Instead, ministers stick with their business-as-usual approach, further enabling the fossil fuel industry to profit and pollute, while paying scant regard to the average citizen or the environment.”

Caroline Lucas MEP