Claire's blog

Fracking, UK climate targets and post-truth politics

Having waited for months for the government to publish a statutory report by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) on the impact of fracking on the UK's legally binding climate targets, campaigners suspected that it was not favourable to the government's "all-out for shale" policy. Some of the more cynical among us may have expected it on 6th July, on the day of the even-more-long-awaited Chilcot report into the Iraq war. In fact the report was finally released on the morning of 7th July.

'Lobbying ban' for public-funded charities and even scientists

“There is nothing a government hates more than to be well informed; for it makes the process of arriving at decisions much more complicated and difficult.”

This quote from John Maynard Keynes was used in a recent editorial in the BMJ arguing that the UK’s planned new anti-lobbying clause, by muzzling scientists will jeopardise evidence informed policy making in public health. The potential impacts are just as concerning for other areas including energy policy.

In the new clause all organisations in receipt of state grants would have to agree, as a very broad legal condition, not to use public money to influence MPs or political parties, attempt to influence legislation or regulatory action, or press for the renewal of contracts and grants.

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