- The speech was hotly anticipated as the first green speech by a party leader in the current UK parliament.
- Read the full speech transcript
The Deputy Prime Minister began by saying that the consensus on green is falling away. "these days, across much of the Westminster village at least, the environment is being written off by campaign chiefs on both left and right: too expensive in hard times; a distraction from more pressing debates. On no other issue has the political establishment proved more fickle."
- But, he said, "this idea that the British people have suddenly stopped caring about green issues simply isn’t true.... I want to make it very clear that my commitment to the green agenda is as strong as it ever was, and it will stay that way – whether fashionable or not, and no matter what the other parties do....Our view is simple: the government made a commitment to the environment, and we must now stay the course. ...Over the last 3 years we’ve achieved a lot."
- The Deputy Prime Minister says that after a review the government plans to launch a pollinator strategy to protect bees.
- He references the concerns of charities about the impact of the lobbying bill.
- And he says the idea that being pro green is anti consumer is a false dichotomy.