Twinterview: Ed Miliband, Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change

Wednesday 30 September 2009 18:11
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If brevity is the soul of wit, then Twitter would seem the most appropriate medium to interview Labour's rising star Ed Miliband.

Using the microblogging service to allow users to submit their questions, The Indepedent's politics coverage partners Tweetminster tackled the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on the Labour conference, his work as a Minister and many more of the pressing political issues of the moment.

Q: Can you summarise Labour's manifesto in 140 characters?

@edmilibandmp : A fairer,greener, more prosperous, democratic Britain, where we look after each other and don't leave people on their own.

Q: The election debate will be dominated by the economy and leaders, what place will there be for the enivronment?

@edmilibandmp green is the new battleground. its about our economy, our energy security, whether we are fair not just about the environment.

Q: Why do you stand by the expansion of Heathrow?

@edmilibandmp It is consistent with meeting our carbon targets: we can cut by 80% overall by 2050, as long as we do more in other areas.

Q: Do you think we should put an end to domestic flights in the UK?

@edmilibandmp Not by law! I think they will have to become more expensive and over time, and I want fewer as we improve alternatives.

Q: How have environmental protests influenced your decisions, if at all?

@edmilibandmp lawful campaigning has made a difference inc over coal. A convincing case has been made to clean up coal which we are doing.

Q: What are your thoughts on a global carbon trading market?

@edmilibandmp I'm in favour of it.

Q: Climate Change: with the Cons out of the EU mainstream how would this impact GB's role in tackling climate change if they get in?

@edmilibandmp v important point! they are siding with climate change deniers in europe. How can they possibly represent Britain properly?!

Q: When do we start building nuclear powerplants?

@edmilibandmp new plants will be ready to generate electricity from the end of 2017/2018 with building starting a few years earlier.

Q: Will 2010 be a re-run of 1992 or more like 1997?

@edmilibandmp not predicting a labour landslide like 1997. Hard to compare elections but key thing is to remember elections are a choice!

Q: Newsnight is asking on Twitter "Have the Murdochs done a tacit deal with the Conservatives?" What do you think?

@edmilibandmp no idea, but people not newspapers decide elections, old fashioned view i know!

Q: It's been a good conference for you, how has it been for labour?

@edmilibandmp Have shown we r up for fight, we have exciting ideas for the future eg elderly care and choice of who you stand up for...

Final Audioboo question: Our sentiment analysis of tweets during the leader's speech show the most positive reactions were around scrapping ID cards and electoral reform, the most unpopular comments were around the network of supervised homes for 16 & 17 year old mums, would you give us more detail on this policy? A: AudioBoo: Interviewing Ed Miliband on supervised homes for 16 & 17 year old mums

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