Monday July 29, 2019

Business Secretary

Andrea Leadsom has been given the role of Business Secretary, replacing Greg Clark and will now be responsible for the UK’s decarbonisation strategy. Leadsom has previously had the roles of both the Energy Minister and Environment Secretary.

In the early stages of the leadership election for the Conservative Party she said that if she became Prime Minister she would declare a “climate emergency”. She also pledged to set up a Cabinet sub-committee tasked with overseeing net zero plans for 2050.

Environment Secretary

Theresa Villiers will be filling the role of Environment Secretary and has shown support to climate action, endorsing certain environmental policies and low-carbon initiatives.

Villiers is replacing Michael Gove who was responsible for leading the delivery of Defra’s (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs) 25-Year Environment Plan. Gove has also been a key figure in the Government’s plan to eliminate avoidable plastic waste.

COP26 President

Another move saw Claire Perry give up her role as Energy and Clean Growth Minister at BEIS (Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) in order to serve as the COP26 President.

The 26th Conference of Parties (COP) will be an important event for climate action. The consensus reached at the Paris Agreement in 2015 is expected to come into full effect at the event, adding pressure to countries to improve their national climate action plans ahead of the event.

COP26 will be co-hosted by the UK, with Italy organising the pre-COP event. The event itself is expected to take place from 9-19 November 2020.

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