Climate change: What MPs think - M to O

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Indy Politics

* What MPs think - introduction
* What MPs think - A to C
* What MPs think - D to F
* What MPs think - G to H
* What MPs think - I to L
* What MPs think - P to S
* What MPs think - T to Y


Andrew Mackay

Bracknell, Conservative

1 I believe climate change is extremely important as illustrated by the Stern Report.

2 We urgently need a climate change bill and I have co sponsored relevant motions here in the House to press the Government to introduce one which has real teeth.

3 I constantly talk about this issue in the constituency and recently shared a platform with the local branch of Friends of the Earth.

Fiona Mactaggart

Slough, Labour

1 Very

2 Emphasise the things we can all do from boiling less water to using more energy-saving light bulbs, turn appliances off at the plug rather than leaving on standby, increase home insulation etc. Then make the more complex things, solar panels, domestic wind turbines as simple and financially rewarding to do as possible and finally help through legislation and research the development of microgeneration, alternative fuels, public transport, discourage use of cars, press European partners etc etc

3 I do as much as I can from improving insulation to washing clothes at low temps to cycling for journeys under 10 miles ­ and I will install a condensing boiler in my flat.

Anne Main

St Albans, Conservative

1 Climate Change is one of the greatest challenges facing our generation. It is not just an environmental issue, but a social and economic one. We also have a responsibility to the developing world. Countries such as Bangladesh will be destroyed by rising sea levels, and existing regional tensions such as low rainfall or desertification will be exasperated. Fighting climate change is a moral imperative.

2 In Britain, we must start by cutting our own emissions. A Climate Change Bill would help this. We need Government to lead by example, cutting its own energy use, converting to renewable energy sources, and using its enormous buying power to foster non-polluting technologies.

Then we need long-term policies to create a framework for a shift to a low carbon economy. Only once we have put our own house in order, will we have the moral authority to lead an international effort to achieve a fair, robust, global system for tackling climate change. In the end, hard though it will be to secure, there must be a global agreement.

3 I drive a small fuel efficient car; I commute using trains and the tube to get to work; endeavour to recycle and compost waste; avoid accepting unnecessary bags and packaging; always leave a "dark room" behind me and avoid leaving appliances on standby. I am fortunate that we have solar panels on the roof which help enormously with gas consumption and heating bills. My staff within my office read emails and documents from the screen and avoid printing them if possible. I also ensure that the many 'standard' letters that colleagues and I receive each day from numerous organisations and businesses are placed in recycling bins and I think that lobbying organisations ought to change some of their practices in helping to reduce paper use.

John Mann

Bassetlaw, Labour

1 Climate change is a major concern demanding an urgent and global response. However it is not an issue that will win or lose elections. I believe we are still one or two elections away from climate change being an issue as decisive as the NHS, public services or law and order.

2 Britain needs to lead the way internationally. We need a real response and not pointless targets with no plan for how to achieve them and not uncosted so-called green tax plans. Until the British coal industry was decimated we were the global leader in the development of clean coal technology. There are energy companies in Britain committed to developing and mainstreaming this technology and we need to ensure they get proper support. We also need to support diversification in the motor industry to make sure Britain is the first place where hydrogen and bio-fuelled cars become the norm.

3 My office is implementing a new energy saving policy. I travel from my constituency to London each week by train and walk to and from Parliament every day. I want to see every school in my constituency have its own wind turbine for energy generation.

John Maples

Stratford-on-Avon, Conservative

1 Very.

2 Not much alone except give a lead and set an example. We need to work for international agreement and technology transfer.

3 I have signed the FoE 25/5 pledge.

Rob Marris

Wolverhampton South West, Labour

1 Very.

2 Lead in cutting emissions, AND in adapting to the effects of climate change, which are already happening.

3 Cut personal CO2 emissions; and urge pressure for adequate adaptation plans by our government.

Bob Marshall-Andrews

Medway, Labour

1 It is the most important political issue bar none.

2 By example; by a rigorous programme of green taxation (especially on aviation) and by exploiting our unique advantages as a small island surrounded by natural energy resources.

3 Environmentally friendly building, buying a bicycle and, in the constituency, playing my part in the defeat of the awful Cliffe airport proposal as part of a wider campaign against aviation expansion.

Francis Maude

Horsham, Conservative; Chairman of the Conservative Party

1 Climate Change is the greatest challenge facing our generation, although its worst effects will impact not my generation but my children's and their children.

2 In Britain, we must start by cutting our own emissions. A Climate Change Bill would help this. We need Government to lead by example, cutting its own energy use, converting to renewable energy sources, and using its enormous buying power to foster non-polluting technologies.

Then we need long-term policies to create a framework for a shift to a low carbon economy. Only once we have put our own house in order, will we have the moral authority to lead an international effort to achieve a fair, robust, global system for tackling climate change. In the end, hard though it will be to secure, there must be a global agreement.

3 Not yet enough. I and my family aim to cut our personal carbon emissions significantly; reducing car use, installing energy efficient light bulbs and other low carbon products, avoiding flying, switching off electrical appliances when not in use, converting to a renewable electricity supplier, recycling and composting waste.

Theresa May

Maidenhead, Conservative; Shadow Leader of the House of Commons

1 Climate Change is one of the greatest challenges facing our generation. It is a social and economic issue as well as being an environmental issue.

2 It is vital that we cut our emissions and key to this aim is a Climate Change Bill. Britain can lead the way on the global climate change agenda but we must get our own House in order first. The Government can begin this by cutting its own energy use, converting to renewable energy sources and using its position in the market to encourage non-polluting technologies. Then we must develop long-term policies to create a framework for a shift to a low carbon economy - sadly under Labour carbon emissions have risen, the Conservatives want to see them fall. When we have shown our willingness to act then we will have the authority to lead an international effort for a fair, robust, global system for tackling climate change. Our aim must be for a global agreement on climate change.

3 Personally I am attempting to make my own contribution by starting to use energy efficient light bulbs, by trying to ensure I switch off electrical appliances when not in use; by recycling and composting waste, and by partially switching to a renewable electricity supplier.

Steve McCabe

Birmingham, Hall Green, Labour

1 Climate Change is a huge issue affecting all nations.

2 Britain can take steps to limit our own CO2 emissions but recognising that we account for 2% of the problem we need international cooperation. We can provide a lead in seeking that kind of cooperation.

3 The real test in a constituency like mine is the lead which the City Council provides in terms of energy efficiency in schools and other public buildings. I think individuals like myself can contribute by reducing individual car journeys by making use of public transport like buses which I do and reducing energy consumption at home by use of more efficient light bulbs, turning off appliances and improving home insulation.

I am sceptical about people who boast of the energy saving devices they plan to put into their second homes and holiday homes because I suspect reduced consumption on all fronts is part of the psychology of facing up to climate change.

Kerry McCarthy

Bristol East, Labour

1 As Tony Blair said at the launch of the landmark Stern report " This disaster (climate change) is not set to happen in some science fiction future many years ahead, but in our lifetime," I totally agree with this comment and that it is ""literally disastrous," what could happen if we do not act. All of us ­ Government, business and the general public ­ must take responsibility and make the changes needed to protect the environment.

2 Every person should do their bit to help protect our environment, whether it be using public transport or walking more instead of taking the car; making their homes more energy-efficient and cutting down on their own energy consumption; recycling more; making environmentally-conscious decisions as consumers (e.g. being aware of 'food miles' and choosing locally-grown produce, avoiding excess packaging) and many other small but important steps to help the environment.

We all have our own individual responsibility to protect the environment, however, it is also important that the Government takes the lead and sets a precedent which others can follow. The public sector equals one-third of the UK economy, and is responsible for £150bn of public sector procurement every year; it should use its power in the marketplace to help us achieve our environmental objectives.

I very much welcome the announcement that there will be a Climate Change Bill in the Queens Speech that will establish an independent Carbon Committee to work with government in reducing emissions. The Government has already taken many measures to help protect our environment including; introducing the Climate Change Levy; £1billion invested in renewables; the Waste and Emissions Trading Act limiting the amount of biodegradable municipal waste local authorities can landfill; and creating the UK Emissions Trading Scheme which in its first two years has reduced companies emissions by 9.8 million tonnes. But this is still not enough; the Government must and will continue to work towards making Britain as green as is possible. The recent Stern Review makes a compelling economic case for taking climate change seriously, and throws down the gauntlet to other countries to follow the UK's lead on this issue.

3 In my constituency I have supported the work of voluntary sector organisations, such as the Furniture Re-use Network and the Sofa project, which promote recycling, and lobbied the Energy Minister on their behalf about the delayed implementation of the WEEE Directive. I have also campaigned for the Council to do more to encourage household recycling, and in particular, to introduce doorstep plastics collections (so far, with limited success). I want to do more to make constituents aware of what they can do to conserve energy, and to persuade local businesses to do their bit, by, for example, not leaving empty offices lit at night. I am also keen to campaigning on packaging, and on food miles, as I believe most people would think twice about what purchases they make if these issues were brought to their attention.

Individually, I would suggest that being a vegan ­ which I have been for the past 14 years ­ or a vegetarian can be one of the most environmentally-friendly choices a person can make. I am also conscious of food miles, buy organic food whenever possible, and buy household products from Ecover. I've bought energy-efficient light bulbs but no wind turbines or loft insulation (I live in ground floor flats in the constituency and in London). I don't use standby and I've started using the 30° mark on my washing machine. What I need to do is (a) remember to take carrier bags with me when I go food shopping, (b) plan my diary better so I can walk between appointments in city centre (it's quicker than driving in Bristol anyway), and (c) work out how to programme the heaters in my Bristol flat so they don't come on in the middle of the night!

Sarah McCarthy-Fry

Portsmouth North, Labour

1 Firstly can I impress on you my belief that Climate Change is the challenge of our time. And how we, as politicians, respond will be a real test of our desire to reverse this worrying trend. I believe that the scientific evidence is incontrovertible.

2 Politically the government is committed to Climate Change and since 1997 we have:

Ratified the Kyoto protocol

More than doubled overall household recycling from 7.5% in 1997 to 17%

Over £1 billion invested in renewables, including £117 million in offshore wind, and £60 million in energy crops and biomass

Created the UK Emissions Trading Scheme

250,000 homes to receive subsidised insulation between 2006-2008

3 As a constituency MP, I have written a newspaper column and distributed the leaflet Take Ten Simple Steps to stop Climate Change which details how people can make small steps in their personal lives to make a big result, these vary from turning your TV off rather than leaving it on standby to turning your heating down a couple of degrees.

I am also happy to tell you that I signed EDM 178 on 17 October last year. This motion states: "That this House agrees with the Government's Chief Scientific Adviser that climate change is a threat to civilisation; welcomes the cross-party agreement in favour of major cuts in greenhouse gas emissions, and particularly in carbon dioxide emissions, by 2050; believes that such a long-term target will best be met through a series of more regular milestones; and therefore notes the Climate Change Bill that was presented by a cross-party group of honourable Members in the final days before the General Election, and hopes that such a Bill will be brought forward in this Parliament so that annual cuts in carbon dioxide emissions of 3 per cent. can be delivered in a framework that includes regular reporting and new scrutiny and corrective processes."

This statement has today been signed by 398 Members of Parliament, from both sides of the House.

Personally, I take these measures very seriously and plan to have a wind turbine installed at my home, subject to local planning restrictions.

We have a lot more to do, Britain still wastes more energy than any other country in Europe ­ but I am confident that we can rise to this challenge.

Patrick McFadden

Wolverhampton South East, Labour

1 It is a very important issue for the world, not only in terms of the obvious environmental challenge but also the technology and employment opportunities which lie in facing up to this challenge.

2 Britain like all countries can take action of its own but this is a global challenge and will need a global response in addition to the actions of individual countries.

3 In my own constituency, the Labour run Wolverhampton City Council runs a good recycling "green box" service as well as collecting separately garden refuse. On a personal level I recycle newspapers and bottles. I think we are all conscious of individual behaviour as well as government and international action and I'm sure there is more we could do.

John McFall

West Dunbartonshire, Labour; Chairman, Treasury Select Committee

1 The environment is our most important asset. Climate change and depletion of natural resources knows no boundaries.

2 Tackling this problem needs our attention at local, national and international level - and that's why I am working hard to get things done.

The Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Act aims to ensure that electricity suppliers offer a fair price for electricity from small generators and empowers government to force all energy suppliers to acquire exported electricity. It has become clear that there will have to be local energy policy to go alongside national energy policy.

In my constituency of West Dunbartonshire much is being done to provide excellent recycling facilities and I have been urging my constituents to take full advantage of what's on offer. I would like my area to be one of the greenest constituencies in the country, and to that end I have been helping to promote, along with the Energy Saving Trust and DEFRA, the simple ten-point checklist which ranges from urging people to turn their thermostat down by 1ºC, which could cut heating bills by up to 10 per cent and save around £40 per year per household, to having dripping hot water taps repaired. We have a saying in Scots: Every meikle macks a muckle (every little helps to make a lot), and it certainly does in regard to energy savings.

I have told my constituents that climate change is one of the most challenging issues facing the Government today and that the Government is fully committed to it.

We are looking beyond Kyoto and promoting international dialogue to reach agreement on the long-term goals and action needed to stabilise the level of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. And we are working for effective international action to adapt to the impacts of climate change.

We set out measures in the Climate Change Programme and Energy Review which means we are on course to exceed our commitment under the Kyoto Protocol and to cut UK carbon dioxide emissions by about 16 per cent from the 1990 level by 2010.

This Government recognises that we need to do more to make progress towards our long term goal of cutting CO2 emission by 60 per cent by 2050. International targets and milestones have a role to play but do not of themselves reduce emissions.

3 National and international are important, but it's essential that the message gets home on the gound. I recently went along to the Sunday morning service at Abbotsford Parish Church in Clydebank to present the EcoCongregation Award to the Rev Roddy Hamilton and the congregation there. Abbotsford is the first and only church in West Dunbartonshire to have been given this award, and only the 37th in Scotland.

I told the congregation that when I first went to parliament in 1987, environmental issues were hardly ever mentioned. Now everyone is talking about climate change. I said that I had recently been to both China and India where the population in each country exceeded one billion, and where there was huge pressure to build power stations within a remarkably short timescale to meet the large and continually increasing demand for energy. And I stressed that it was imperative that a proper strategy was in place to achieve eco balance in this regard and to heighten awareness of the environmental challenges the world is now facing.

The work being done by churches like Abbotsford is hugely important. The EcoCongregation Award is a UK-wide scheme, open to all denominations. Its aim is to encourage churches to incorporate environmental issues as part of their wider mission. To qualify for the award, a church has to demonstrate that it is doing three things:

* Celebrating nature within its regular worship

* Taking practical steps to reduce its impact on the environment

* Participating in activities to help the local and wider global community.

This is an excellent initiative, especially when added to others like Fair Trade or buying a goat from Oxfam or a flock of sheep ­ as the Abbotsford congregation has done ­ and taking local environmental issues like recycling seriously. The Abbotsford congregation have all become green apostles and I am encouraging other groups to follow the example set by them.

Anne McIntosh

Vale of York, Conservative

1 Climate Change is one of the greatest challenges facing us. It is mot just an environmental issue, but a social and economic one. We must raise awareness of the problem to the public at large in a thoughtful, productive and innovative way.

2 We must lead by example. A Climate Change Bill would help achieve this. Government must cut its own energy use, converting to renewable energy sources, and using its enormous buying power to foster non-polluting technologies. Secondly, we need long-term policies to create a framework for a shift to a low carbon economy. Only by setting a lead, will we have the moral authority to lead an international effort to achieve a fair, robust, global system for tackling climate change. Without global agreement we can achieve nothing. Sadly, carbon emissions under Labour have risen; we want to see them fall.

3 By recognising that climate change is a huge issue and that something must be done. I want to play my own part in protecting the planet. I will ensure that I recycle plastics, glass and paper in my own household and seek to ensure that no lights are left on unnecessarily in the house, this includes switching off all electrical appliances that are not being used. I set my washing machine and heating at the lowest temperature.

As an MP I travel to London on a weekly basis and try and use the most environmentally sustainable means possible.

Ann McKechin

Glasgow North, Labour

1 Climate Change is a major concern particularly for the world's poorest who are likely to be the worst affected. A decade ago, climate change was a matter of scientific debate. Now it is established fact. Records show that the three warmest year have all occurred since 1998; 19 of the warmest 20 since 1980. The consequences of climate change are wide-ranging. The effects are environmental but they are also potentially political, economic and social. Government, organisations and individuals all need to face the challenges.

2 The response to climate change, by the very nature of the problem, has to be international. However, Britain can take a lead on this issue. I want the Government to meet its target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 23 per cent from the 1990 level by 2010. This would mean we had doubled our Kyoto commitment. We need also to make significant progress towards our voluntary domestic target to cut carbon dioxide emissions by 20 per cent. Britain needs to put climate change at the top of the international agenda in the European Union, G8 and other bodies and to change the way we think in every aspect of our lives.

3 This year I have held Energy Saving seminars in my constituency as well as an open discussion on climate change. This has given constituents the opportunity to learn how they can cut their energy consumption. My staff and I have also learnt a lot from these sessions. My staff now are keen to make sure that they switch off the monitors on their computers when not in use after learning how much power this uses. We are also using the storage heating in the office more efficiently. I am also much more careful about switching off electrical appliances at home and in the office when not in use rather than leaving them on standby. I recycle wherever possible. I travel mostly by bus when in London and cut down on short journeys by car back at home in Glasgow.

Michael Meacher

Oldham West & Royton, Labour

1 It is the greatest overarching issue facing the whole planet.

2 By leading the world in putting into effect the fundamental changes that need to be made to counter climate change, as a message to all other countries.

Alan Meale

Mansfield, Labour

1 Combating climate change is the biggest challenge to mankind.

2 Britain can, and must, play a lead role both at home and globally in the international arena in finding solutions.

3 As a Parliamentarian, I am deeply engaged in the campaign to highlight the problem it brings. In the constituency I regularly speak about it and recently produced a free newspaper devoted to the subject. My wife and I have, wherever possible, geared our home and lives to good environmental measures. We also practice sound energy techniques such as electrical switch offs, energy efficient light bulbs etc. Finally we car share and wherever possible use public transport to travel in connection with our jobs.

David Miliband

South Shields, Labour; Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

1 Climate change is the most important environmental threat the world faces. The debate about climate change has shifted in recent years ­ from whether it is happening, to how fast we need to move to stop it.

Atmospheric carbon dioxide levels are now higher than at any time for at least the last 740,000 years. Atmospheric CO? is now around 40 per cent higher than before the industrial revolution. This has resulted in a rise in temperature at the earth's surface of 0.7 degrees in the last century, almost certainly unprecedented in human civilisation, and cause by human activity.

The rise in temperature is likely to be partly responsible for the current rise in extreme weather in terms of heat waves, droughts, storms and floods. All of the ten warmest years since 1850 have occurred since 1990. Arctic sea ice in summer has already thinned by about 40 per cent in the last 50 years. Climate change is a short term issue.

A doubling of pre-industrial levels of greenhouse gases is very likely to commit the Earth to an eventual global temperature rise of between 2 degrees and 5 degrees Celsius. This will push the great eco-systems of the world into irreversible decline. Even if temperatures rise by only 2 degrees, 15-40 per cent of species will face extinction.

The effects will be not just on nature but people. Over 30,000 deaths were caused by the 2003 European heatwave. In future, declining crop yields and reduced fish stocks from ocean acidification could leave hundreds of millions of people without the ability to produce or purchase sufficient food. Melting glaciers could reduce dry-season water supplies to one-sixth of the world's population. Rising sea levels could results in tens to hundreds of millions more people flooded each year.

The Stern Review said there is still time to avoid the worst impacts of climate change, if we act now and if we act internationally. Governments, businesses and individuals all need to work together to response to the challenge. Strong, deliberate policy choices by governments are essential to motivate change. But the task is urgent. Delaying action, even by a decade or two, will take us into dangerous territory. We must not let this window of opportunity close.

2 As part of the Kyoto Protocol, the UK is committed to reducing its greenhouse gas emissions by 12.5 per cent by 2008-2012. We are on target to nearly double our target and the UK has one of the best records of any country in tackling greenhouse gas emissions. The UK has also set itself the challenging target of cutting CO? emissions by 20 per cent below 1990 levels by 2010 and due to the new Climate Change Programme and the Energy Review report are currently on track to reduce the UK's carbon dioxide emissions to between 15-18 per cent below 1990 levels by 2010.

The Climate Change Programme introduced measures to reduce emissions targets for every sector of the economy and include a stricter emissions cap for industry, measures to encourage the uptake of biofuels in petrol, tighter building regulations, measures to improve household energy efficiency and renewed emphasis on encouraging and enabling the general public, businesses and public authorities to help achieve the Government's targets as well as increased levels of microgeneration.

Since 2000, we have introduced a climate change levy, introduced an Energy Efficiency Commitment, set a ten per cent renewables target and introduced the renewables obligation, been the first country to launch a UK Emissions Trading Scheme and led the way in the launch of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme ­ the world's first multi-country emissions trading scheme.

We have also announced climate change legislation, which will out the Government's long-term goal to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 60 per cent by 2050 into statute. It will also establish an independent body ­ the Carbon Committee ­ to work with Govt to reduce emissions over time and across the economy. Its advice will be open, transparent, equitable and mindful of sectoral and competitiveness impacts, including the need to secure energy supplies at competitive prices. And the legislation will also create enabling powers to put in place new emissions reduction measures needed to achieve our goals, as well as improve monitoring and reporting arrangements, including how the Govt reports to Parliament.

The Stern Review provides a solid analysis of the complex economic challenges around climate change and will provide a basis for good policy-making at national and international levels. The report will be invaluable for Ministers and officials involved in the Gleneagles Dialogue on Climate Change ­ set up as part of our G8 Presidency last year ­ and the international climate negotiations under the United Nations. We will continue to work closely with these and other key organisations such as the World Bank and the IEA.

3 Recently, I helped launch an interesting and potentially important project being conducted by the Royal Society of Arts, called Carbon Limited. Its an exciting scheme investigating the potential of personal carbon allowances and how they might be traded

I've registered by own personal carbon footprint on the RSA CarbonDaq, and I'd encourage others to do so. You can calculate your carbon footprint and compare it with mine, Jon Snow's and other people registered with the site. The site also enables you to see the impact of behaviour change.

I'm struck that people are becoming increasingly aware of climate change. Being able to measure your carbon footprint, participate in an online mock-up of a personal carbon trading scheme and comparing progress with others, helps shows that we can all make a difference.

In my Department, my blog has regularly featured climate change issues, and the idea of personal carbon allowances generated a huge amount of interest among the general public.

I have also launched the first Government wiki which allows people to engage in real-time on key climate change and environmental issues.

In my constituency, I regularly appear on local radio stations to talk about the need for everyone to cut their own emission levels so that we can move towards One Planet Living. And I write a regular column in my local newspaper, which has touched upon climate change on numerous occasions.

Ed Miliband

Doncaster North, Labour

Everyone needs to play their part in tackling climate change. That is why I have launched a campaign calling for people in my constituency to take 5 Steps for a Greener Doncaster North. The 5 Steps are:

1) Change your light bulb to energy saving recommended ones

2) Recycle more to limit landfill waste

3) Adjust your thermostat to cut heating costs

4) Turn off electronic devices when you aren't using them

5) Insulation will keep your home warm using less energy and less money

Andrew Miller

Ellesmere Port & Neston, Labour

1 It is of the highest importance.

2 Britain can press for international agreements and take a lead as we have in the Kyoto process as well as promoting better understanding about the problem amongst citizens in the UK.

In 1997 I visited China to study what was happening in terms of energy usage. After that visit I said that it will be impossible to meet the world energy demand and avoid climatic disaster. I am therefore persuaded that whatever happens there will have to be a significant expansion of nuclear power. Ideas that our energy saving efforts, however much they grew would meet the growing demands elsewhere in the world are frankly fanciful. So the anti-nuclear lobby have to face that or deny our lifestyle to billions of people.

3 I have promoted improvements in air quality, pressed vehicle and fuel companies to work together on clean fuel technologies and argued the case for a "hydrogen highway". My wife and I have planted nearly 1000 trees on land we own. I drive an LPG powered car and have substantially cut the number of car journeys I do in favour of trains. I am currently investigating both solar and wind solutions at home.

Maria Miller

Basingstoke, Conservative

1 Climate change is clearly one of the most important issues facing us. It about much more than just the environment ­ there are important social and economic implications as well. It is also an issue of profound long term significance which will affect our children and our children's children.

2 Britain clearly has a strong leadership role to play, both in terms of leading the global debate on climate change, as the Stern review earlier this week showed, as well as through reducing our own emissions. A Climate Change Bill, which my party has been calling for, would help in both these respects.

3 30% of all CO2 emissions come from our homes so there is a lot we can all do in our day to day life to help climate change. Over 700 new houses are buit in Basingstoke each year as a result of Government house building targets. The Borough Council is working hard to help ensure new housing reaches the highest environmental standards but I feel that more can be done to encourage new and more innovative approachs particularly in the area of microgeneration. I will continue to encourge more innovative thinking in this area.

Heightening awareness of the issue of climate change is also important and I regularly take part in community debates on this issue to help ensure climate change remains top of mins and highly relevant to the residents of Basingstoke. I also recycle and compost as much of my household rubbish as I can and use energy saving light bulbs in my home.

Anne Milton

Guildford, Conservative

1 Climate change and its effects are of considerable concern to my constituents. Guildford is an environmentally conscious place with the local council having made significant strides in doing what they can with fantastic support from the local people.

2 I continue to put pressure on my local council, encourage local people, support initiatives and lobby Government and Ministers. I am lucky that at the grass roots, level there is no resistance and in fact a dynamic and pro-active enthusiasm.

However Britain can do more and take a lead, setting an example for other countries, through setting more vigorous targets.

Andrew Mitchell

Sutton Coldfield, Conservative; Shadow Secretary of State for International Development

1 Climate Change is without a doubt one of the most pressing political challenges facing us today. It is not just an environmental issue, but a social and economic one with far-reaching implications. It is absolutely vital that we all take serious measures to tackle it now.

2 We must reduce carbon emissions here in Britain; individually and collectively we can all play our part in doing so. I believe a Climate Change Bill would help make a real difference. I also believe that the Government must lead by example for Britain effectively to tackle the challenges posed, for example by cutting its own energy consumption, converting to renewable energy sources, and investing in non-polluting technologies. We need clear long-term policies to ensure the transition into a low carbon economy.

As climate change is a global challenge, effectively tackling it demands the committed efforts of the all within the international community. To this end Britain can set the standard by its efforts to reduce carbon emissions and lead the way.

3 I and my family now recycle everything that we can. We choose to use energy efficient light bulbs and other low carbon products in our home. I use a bicycle whenever I am in London and have done since 1997!

Anne Moffat

East Lothian, Labour

Climate Change is a big concern in my constituency. I have arranged for briefings to be widely circulated to constituents and my newspaper column this week was on climate change. I have also signed the EDM asking for further controls.

Laura Moffatt

Crawley, Labour

1 Climate change is very important.

2 As a country we all need to recognise the threat of climate change ­ and take action.

3 We do all we can as a family. We have three water buts and recycle our rubbish. We compost and leave no appliances on standby. We use low energy lightbulbs and use the shower rather that having baths ­ and have reduced the water pressure in the shower. We cycle or use public transport when possible. As a small business (ie MP's office) we intend entering the Crawley Green Business Awards.

Chris Mole

Ipswich, Labour

1 There is no issue more important than Climate Change facing us today. There is no doubt about the science and the Stern report makes the economic case also.

2 Britain can make a difference through its own efforts to encourage changes in individual and collective behaviours, both through education, through fiscal measures and regulation. Perhaps more importantly the UK can lead the European and wider international community to respond to the carbon reducation agenda with suitable urgency.

3 I have pursued a sustainable transport agenda as a former local government leader, encouraging public transport, park and ride schemes for Ipswich, pro-cycling and walking opportunities, walking buses etc. I have pressed for new housing development to meeet eco-homes standards. Personally I have replaced my central heating boiler with a condensing boiler, turned the thermostat down and the family has acquired a hybrid technology car. However I prefer to walk, bus, cycle or car share to work where possible.

Madeleine Moon

Bridgend, Labour

1 Huge.

2 Read the EFRA select committee report on this and the forthcoming citizens agenda. Sharing and developing technology for use in developing countries. Ensuring there is action by individuals, industry and business to cut emissions and to reduce energy use. Make it cheaper to take action than to do nothing. Keep taking and advocating the involvement of other countires and building partnerships.

3 Newsletters, sign up campaigns to reducing energy use and emissions, talking to schools and local business. Reducing personal energy use and signing up to the energy saving trust audit of my home.

Michael Moore

Berwickshire, Roxburgh & Selkirk, LibDem

1 Climate change is the greatest threat that the world currently faces. Sadly we are already seeing the effects of climate change, such as the melting of glaciers resulting in a rise in sea levels and leading to devastating floods, and the increasing frequency of extreme weather events.

Climate change is a global phenomenon and will affect all of us, but the poorest countries are likely to suffer the most. Countries such as Bangladesh, Thailand and Vietnam will be massively affected by a rise in sea levels. Large parts of China and India will lose their supply of drinking water. Highly-infectious diseases will spread rapidly and millions of refugees will be displaced.

As mentioned above, the developed countries that are contributing the most to climate change will not be the ones that are most affected by it. Instead it will be some of the poorest countries; those that are least able to cope.

2 The debate on climate change in Britain needs to be led by the Government. We need a Climate Change Bill which contains the following measures: meaningful targets for cutting emissions; the promotion of renewable energy sources; ways to make it easier and cheaper for people to generate their own energy; a requirement on the Government to submit an annual report on the current levels of greenhouse gas emissions and the efforts that it is making to reduce them.

We also need, as proposed by the Liberal Democrats, a "green tax switch", which would make the polluter pay by increasing green taxes on high emission vehicles and aircraft.

3 Personally, the steps that I have taken to date have been to reduce the amount of energy that I use in the home. I have double glazing, cavity wall insulation, loft insulation and a condensing boiler. I have switched to low energy light bulbs, take showers instead of baths, only fill up the kettle with the amount of water that I need and no longer leave any appliances on stand-by. I was also made "carbon neutral" last year through the planting of a group of trees in a forest in my constituency.

However, I recognise that I need to do more. As an MP with a vast rural constituency in Scotland, I travel hundreds of miles each week; be it to events across the constituency or travelling from the constituency to Westminster and back. I have pledged that, allowing for Parliamentary business constraints, I will seek to take the train instead of the plane from the constituency to Westminster at least once a month and I will switch my electricity supplier to a renewable energy supplier.

Jessica Morden

Newport East, Labour

1 The most important issue facing Governments around the world as it will impact on the way we lead our lives and our economy in a very short time.

2 Lead by example in reducing the UK's emissions and use our strong position in the global community to bring about worldwide political solutions.

3 Use my position locally to talk about the issues linking up closely with groups like Newport Friends of the Earth and Newport Wastesavers. Personally I'm in the process of buying a house so am looking at what I can do to insulate, install energy efficient appliances and a boiler, and shop around for utility companies. Newport Council and Wastesavers run an excellent weekly kerbside recycling scheme. As refuse is only collected fortnightly once my baby arrives I'm determined to crack using non disposable nappies!

Elliot Morley

Scunthorpe, Labour; Former Environment Minister

1 Climate Change is the biggest environmental threat this planet faces and may ever have faced and has to be a top priority.

2 No industrial country has done more than the UK, is set to exceed its Kyoto targets or given such a strong political lead but it's still not enough. We need to gear our economy to carbon budgeting. We need to extend carbon allowances to all areas of society, personal, business, transport and domestic and extend the EU ETS to other sectors and make it global. We need to use all means at our disposal, regulation, incentives and fiscal measure to promote new technologies, cleaner fuels, higher building standards, energy efficiency, and renewables. We have to use our influence to get the US to sign up to Kyoto, emerging companies to do more and for further and faster measures in the UNFCCC process.

3 I have signed up to the Energy saving Trust and All Party Climate Change Group's pledge to cut 20% energy use by insulation upgrades (using the Energy Efficiency Commitment of my supplier) low energy light bulbs, replacing washing machine and fridge with A+ rated products, more efficient boiler, recycling and composting. Not leaving electricals on standby, using public transport, car-sharing where possible. I also carbon offset air travel and have offset annual car use. I also carbon offset my election campaign in 2005. Offsets are not a substitute for cutting emissions or a substitute for international action, but we can take action today by providing funds for investment in decent low carbon schemes and there is no excuse for anyone not to do so. I am a member of GLOBE (Global legislators Organisation for a Balanced Environment) and spend a lot of time working with legislators internationally to push for action on climate change. I am involved in setting up a major co-conference in Washington in February with members from all parties, top international companies and key Senators to press these messages on Capital Hill. I represent the PM and government in the Gleneagles G8+5 dialogue with special emphasis on legislators. I speak to students locally on this issue and have been working with the Wildlife Trust in raising awareness on climate with their members. I have encouraged the local council to fit biomass boilers in public buildings and improve sustainable development.

Malcolm Moss

North East Cambridgeshire, Conservative

1 Climate change is the most far-reaching and potentially disastrous event facing the planet's future and the economic, social and political stability of nations and peoples.

2 Lead by example; levy environmental taxes on individuals and businesses; persuade and cajole others to follow suit; devise and implement a long-term energy strategy which reduces CO? emissions and pollution ; penalise Govt Depts. and the public services if they do not lead the way on environmental improvements.

3 I am just about to re-roof and insulate part of my home; replace an old boiler with a condensing oil-fired boiler; replace all my light bulbs (about 60% the way there); changed my car recently to diesel; looking at micro generation. At Constituency level I have supported and continue to support wind turbines on farmland in the Fens, and the reopening of the Wisbech to March rail link.

Greg Mulholland

Leeds North West, LibDem

1 It is the most important concern facing mankind and our entire planet. It threatens everyone across the globe and every single country must commit to tackling it, and doing so now.

2 Britain must take a decisive lead on climate change. The EU led on the Kyoto agreement and we have a moral obligation to lead international negotiations and achieve international agreements on emissions reduction.

3 I am, and will continue to take a number of steps to reduce my impact on the environment and cut my energy usage, such as recycling my household waste, not leaving appliances on standby and using them less often, and using energy saving light bulbs. I also now have an eco kettle, which cuts energy usage 30% when you boil water. In my office, we also are taking several steps to reduce energy usage, replacing the office light bulbs with energy saving versions and investigating greener energy suppliers. These are all simple steps which everyone can take to do their bit to tackle climate change.

Chris Mullin

Sunderland South, Labour

1 I regard the future of the planet as the most important political issue.

2 Britain should lead by example. Realistically, however, this does require a degree of consensus. It is difficult for a government to introduce green taxes on, for example, gas guzzling cars if the principal Opposition party immediately (with the support of much of the media) immediately declares itself to be "the party of the motorist". Areas where we can do much more include waste disposal (we may have to penalise people who won't co-operate) and reducing electricity and gas consumption, starting with public buildings, but also by insisting that new buildings are built to higher environmental standards.

3 As to what I do personally: I recycle assiduously, I have a compost heap and each weekend for some years myself and a neighbour have collected the rubbish from our street (a private road outwith the local authority street cleaning arrangements), taking care to recycle whatever we can. I also maintain a robust dialogue with my local authority on the need to improve local recycling rates which - as elsewhere in the North East ­ remain unacceptably low.

Dave Mundell

Dumfriesshire, Clydesdale & Tweeddale, Conservative

1 Climate change is the biggest issue facing my constituents, this country and the world.

2 Our own Climate Change Bill in the UK would be a start. This country leading the global debate is also essential. Mobilising public opinion towards energy saving.

3 Getting and distributing the facts ­ most people don't understand how easy it is to make a difference for example by switching off their TV rather than using standby. I do try and use the train more than flights.

Denis Murphy

Wansbeck, Labour

1 Climate change is the biggest problem facing the planet.

2 Britain should be actively working with China and India sharing technologies to assist them in developing their generating capacity in the cleanest possible way. We should invest now in carbon capture and sequestration and clean coal technology. Increase awareness of the huge part each individual can make to reduce emissions without any significant lifestyle changes.

3 At home we have fitted energy saving light bulbs, reduced the thermostat, boil only the quantity of water we need, leave no electrical devices on standby etc., and we are trying to manage with only one car.

Andrew Murrison

Westbury, Conservative

1 From all the evidence currently available, very important.

2 In his last days as Prime Minister I hope Mr Blair might use his relationship with Mr Bush to encourage America to display better leadership on climate change. The US is crucial given the disproportionate contribution it makes to the problem.

3 Like many people, I have made quick wins like putting in loft insulation, using low energy light bulbs and composting kitchen waste.

Bob Neill

Bromley & Chislehurst, Conservative

1 Climate change is a hugely important concern, which is why I have always supported calls for a Climate Change Bill in the next Queen's Speech.

2 Britain must play its part and the Stern Report raises a number of important options to pursue. There is clearly a compelling case to rebalance our taxation system to encourage "green" behaviour and to move the burden onto taxation on unsustainable consumption and away from penalizing savings and families. At the same time, anything we do has to be part of an international approach. Anything we do will be pointless unless emerging economic powers like China and India follow suit.

3 Locally, Bromley has always had a good record on green issues and has one of the best recycling rates in London. All 3 of the Boroughs MPs and the council are signed up to encouraging sustainable living. At home we recycle and compost and have moved over to energy saving light bulbs. We have also done a home energy audit. I shall be looking at green technology when I change my car and encourage others to do like wise. Bromley council was one of the first to use electric vehicles!

Mark Oaten

Winchester, Lib-Dem

1 Climate change is obviously a massive concern and probably the biggest long term threat facing mankind. I understand that the World Health Organisation estimates 150,000 people die each year as a result of climate change and the predictions for the future are even more horrific. We are likely to see the migration of millions of people fleeing environmental disaster and there is a strong possibility of conflicts over scarce natural resources. The difficulty is that because these effects are not as 'immediate' as the threat of terrorism or the problems in public services, the electorate don't as readily identify with the challenges and so don't put pressure on their politicians to address the issue. The danger is that because climate change has not been a priority for this government, the next generation may face insurmountable challenges.

2 I'm pleased that my party has taken the lead in proposing genuine and substantive proposals for tackling climate change. The Lib Dem's Green Switch tax proposals are a serious attempt to address the problem and I look forward to seeing how the other parties will respond. I think David Cameron deserves credit for putting the issue on the political agenda, but we are all waiting to see what this will mean in practice. I really hope that we will be able to have a sensible and informed debate which will lead to develop a cross-party consensus on the best way forward.

Personally I think we should be looking to utilise the power of the market to ensure a reduction in emissions. I think so called cap and trade schemes, in the mould of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme, have the best chance of effecting lasting and significant changes in our behaviour.

Judging by the amount of mail I receive on the issue, I am pleased to say that climate change is a big concern from my constituents. I'm one of the signatories to an EDM calling for a Climate Change Bill in the next Queen's Speech and I've written to Ministers urging them to take these issues more seriously.

3 On a personal level I have to confess I'm not always the most environmentally friendly. However I do try to use public transport when I can, but I think in common with other commuters I often find it expensive, over-crowded and unreliable. I'm also trying to be more energy efficient in our home by doing simple things like turning off electrical appliances when they're not in use and improving insulation ­ not only is it environmentally friendly but it saves you cash!

Stephen O'Brien

Eddisbury, Conservative

1 Climate Change, along with communicable diseases across the developing world, and the funding of pensions and long term care domestically are, in my view, the three greatest predictable challenges facing my generation of politicians.

2 In Britain we must persuade the worst offenders by setting a good example. A Climate Change Bill would help this. We need Government to lead by example, cutting its own energy use, converting to renewable energy resources, and using its enormous buying power to foster non-polluting technologies. Then we need long-term policies to create a framework for a shift to low carbon economy.

3 As a family we have already taken many steps to reduce our carbon emissions and aim to do more. As we have not yet measured a baseline of what we were using 2 years ago, we think a target would be a gesture, not a commitment. Most importantly, we are changing our behaviour regarding energy use.

Lembit Opik

Montgomeryshire, LibDem

1 Currently, it is one of the issues that matters. Shortly, it will become the only issue that matters, dwarfing territorial ambitions, mutual international jealousies and religious rivallries. While these form the main elements of political discourse at the moment here on earth, none of them will be particularly significant if our speicies and other species have no home.

2 The biggest difference Britain can make is to attempt to use its "special relationship" with the U.S.A. to try and get them to alter their lack of political concern to their breath-taking environmental irresponsibility. In the UK itsel;f, we need to swithc the money we'd put into nuclear power towards renewables, and alter lifestyle practice to reflect more sensible behaviours, such as more home-working, habitual recycling and products designed for re-use. Thirdly, we need to support developing countries now, to prevent the phase in their development which would incline them to destroy the environmnet in order to improve their quality of life ­ as the West did and continues to do.

I think the general political environmental is prone to stick rather than carrot ­ we don't avidly promote the benefits of eco-friendiness in a way which motivates the public in a meaningful way.

3 Environmental audit of my house (done), changes to my car's fuel system to improve fuel consumption by 10%-15%, environmental offset payments, recycling (though I'm a bit patchy on this, if I'm honest) and persistent efforts to work with the C.A.T. to make Montgomeryshire into the environmental capital of Britain.

George Osborne

Tatton , Conservative; Shadow Chancellor of the Exchequer

1 I think its one of the greatest challenges we face, with massive economic, social and developmental implications. As the father of two young children, I'm naturally concerned about the world that they will inherit as adults ­ so for me, it's a personal issue too.

2 There are many things that we should do, here are just four. First, we should cut our carbon emissions, which are higher today than they were in 1997. Second, we need a genuine Climate Change Bill with annual carbon emission reduction targets set and monitored by an independent body. We should promote progress towards a global carbon trading scheme. Third, I said a couple of months ago that the proportion of tax revenues that come from green taxes, which has fallen in recent years, needs to rise ­ replacing other taxes on families. Fourth, we should do more to promote investment in new green technologies

3 I try to do as much as I can. I cycle to work regularly. I also offset the carbon emissions of flights I take with trees planted in a sustainable forest.