London mayor unveils plan to tackle 'climate emergency'

(The Guardian, 11 Dec 2018) Exclusive: Sadiq Khan accuses government of dragging its feet and calls for investment to avert catastrophe.

London’s mayor, Sadiq Khan, has declared a climate emergency and urged the UK government to do more to avert an ecological breakdown that he says poses an existential threat to future generations.

Speaking as City Hall outlined its new climate change plan, Khan said he was implementing measures to protect people from floods, fires and the political upheaval caused by climate change. He accused central government of “dragging its feet” on dealing with these issues.

“We are in the midst of a climate emergency which poses a threat to our health, our planet and our children and grandchildren’s future,” Khan told the Guardian. “City Hall is doing everything in our power to mitigate the risk in London but the stark reality is that we need urgent government action and funding.”

The acknowledgement of the scale and nature of the ecological crisis by the leader of one of the world’s major cities comes amid growing concern about the impact of climate change. A succession of scientific reports have laid bare the scale of the unfolding disaster, including one from the UN that said there were only 12 years left to avert the most extreme consequences of climate breakdown.

On Sunday 100 academics, philosophers and authors wrote to the Guardian to back a new civil disobedience group – Extinction Rebellion – and called for people around the world to rise up and organise against the “paralysis” of political leaders.

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The Guardian, 11 Dec 2018: London mayor unveils plan to tackle 'climate emergency'