Responding to your MP
It's great if you have had a reply from your MP, but this is only the beginning of the conversation- especially if you're not convinced about what they have said! We have some ideas for ways that you may wish to respond.
Responding to Conservative MPs...
Our experience of responses from Conservative MPs is an argument that often goes along these lines:
"Climate change remains an important issue to us, but we must keep tax payers bills as low as possible."
This argument is being used to defend the Government's recent decisions to cancel and weaken several significant climate change policies. You can read a summary of these here. For example, this is the response that we had to our open letter sent in August to Amber Rudd, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. Our suggestions for responding to Rudd's reply include some more in-depth questions which may also be useful, however we have summarised our main questions to this line of thinking here;
- Keeping tax payers bills low: A new report by the International Monetry Fund (IMF) has round that the Government gives subsidies to fossil fuels of about £26 billion each year. In contrast to this, renewables are projected to receive just £9.1 bn per year by 2020. The Government has set a target to reduce this to just £7.6 bn (used to justify cuts to Government subsidies for renewables)- less than one third of the subsidies for fossil fuels. Our question for the Government is; What plans does the Government have to reduce subsidies for fossil fuels? Christian Aid have also been addressing this issue, calling on the Government
- Cost effective: Without a doubt, reducing our need for energy by insulation homes and buildings is the most efficient way to reduce household fuel costs whilst also reducing the UKs carbon emissions. Our question for the Government is: Could the Government explain why it has removed the zero carbon homes and buildings policies? These policies meant that from 2016 all new homes had to be built to zero carbon standards, and from 2019 all new buildings should be built to zero carbon standards also. What plans does the Government have to replace these targets? What plans does the Government have to replace the Green Deal which had the purpose of providing funding for home owners to insulate their homes?
Responding to Opposition MPs... (Labour, SNP, Lib Dem etc...)
If you haven't already, you can ask them to...
- Forward your letter to Amber Rudd, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change and to also forward you her reply
- If they have already forwarded you Rudd's reply, you could ask them to question some of the assertions made in Rudd's response themselves
- Ask them to raise climate change in parliament
- Campaign for local changes- better cycle paths, more green spaces, improved public transport etc.