East London MP Rushanara Ali has given her full backing to climate change campaigners in her constituency, and urged people to take a global perspective on green issues.
Ms. Ali was speaking at a constituents meeting last week as part of the Big Climate Connection, a national campaign that has seen almost 1,500 people lobbying over 250 MPs across the country this month, in a call for action on climate change.
She is concerned that many residents do not see how their actions have a direct impact on the livelihoods of people in countries such as Bangladesh and other communities in the developing world that have close ties with East London.
The MP for Bethnal Green and Bow had recently returned from a climate change tribunal in Bangladesh.
Tower Hamlets is one of the few boroughs in the country that has witnessed a rise in CO2 emissions since 2005. Issues of poor housing are directly linked to climate change in the borough as a large proportion of homes fail to meet the Decent Homes Standards.
Ms. Ali urged campaigners to take this problem directly to the newly elected mayor, Luftur Rahman, and demand he secure funding to improve the energy efficiency of local housing.
Ms. Ali agreed to lobby the energy and climate change secretary Chris Huhne to include strong environmental measures in the forthcoming energy bill.
Internationally she supported the group’s demands for the UK to take the lead on climate change action at the upcoming UN climate talk in Cancun, Mexico.
“We are really pleased with the outcome of this meeting,” said Stephanie Delaney a coordinator of the Tower Hamlets lobbying event. “As a group we will work hard to ensure that our objectives, especially on a local level, become a reality.”
A spokesperson for the Tower Hamlets Big Climate Connection lobbying group said that “the meeting was an extremely positive one”, and they plan to reconvene with Rushanara Ali in four months time to asses the progress of the three demands.
For more information or to join a lobbying group go to: www.stopclimatechaos.org/the-big-connection