People, Environment

Pressure on UK to Ratify Paris Agreement

Pressure on UK to Ratify Paris AgreementPressure on UK to Ratify Paris Agreement

Pressure is growing on the UK government to ratify the Paris climate change deal immediately. A spokesman for Prime Minister Theresa May told the BBC the UK would ratify “as soon as possible”, but did not suggest a date. But Labour, the Lib Dems, SNP and the Greens say the UK has lost its long-term leadership on climate after the US and China jointly ratified the deal at the weekend. Supported by the other parties, Labour warns that unless ministers start the ratification process right away, they will attack the government’s “failures” on climate policy in an opposition day Commons debate on Wednesday when a motion will call for immediate action. Some analysts believe ministers are delaying the process until they have their long-awaited low carbon plan in place. Labour’s shadow climate change minister, Barry Gardiner, says he has offered an “olive branch” to Business Secretary Greg Clark, who has previously expressed great concern for the climate. He told BBC News: “The government has not indicated it is ready [to start the ratification process] to allow the UK to be one of the founding parties to the agreement when it comes into force.”