Andover Advertiser Column

The headlines are dominated by leadership news and it is clear that first on any new PM’s agenda must be to deliver Brexit so we can move forward and invest in the opportunities of a post-Brexit global Britain. But to lead this country will require more, and our next PM must demonstrate their vision for the future and determination to deliver a country and society that works for everyone. 

Like all Conservative members I will be scrutinisng the public pronouncements and asking questions of the contenders in the weeks ahead, including how they will deliver on Brexit given the parliamentary arithmetic and the shameful antics of the opposition parties who claim to want to deliver on the Referendum result but have voted against an exit deal three times so far. As much as we all love a crowd pleasing soundbite, this is not the time (and I would argue it never is) for empty words, but for detailed plans that will satisfy the multiple parties in this whole process.

Meanwhile, Theresa May continues to focus on her priorities and I warmly welcomed the announcement this month of world–leading legislation to set a new net zero target of greenhouse gas emissions for the UK target for the UK. 

I have been driving this initiative across government for the past two years (along with our bid to host the UN’s 26th annual Climate Change talks in 2020) not only because I want to see damaging emissions dropping rapidly but also because the business opportunities for low carbon leadership are immense. We now have over 400,000 people working in the “green economy” which is growing rapidly (that’s bigger than the aerospace sector in the UK) and it is growing rapidy. 

The path to net zero will be challenging, but I firmly believe that the innovation and determination of UK businesses and people, which has seen us lead the world in reducing our emissions while continuing to grow our economy, will mean that we are able to rise to the challenge – the benefits of which will be incalculable for future generations.