Fossil Fuel Interest Groups

Cop26 – in the House of Commons on 15th June 2022.

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Photo of Jon Trickett Jon Trickett Labour, Hemsworth

If he will make an assessment of the effect of fossil fuel interest groups on the outcomes of COP26.

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma Minister without Portfolio , COP26 President (Cabinet Office)

I answered this question earlier, but I reiterate that, to participate on UK presidency platforms at COP26, all corporates were required to sign up to net zero commitments. Let me reconfirm that there were no fossil fuel companies participating on UK presidency platforms.

Photo of Jon Trickett Jon Trickett Labour, Hemsworth

Look, the truth is that the whole process of transition is either stalled or in reverse. We know that there are powerful interest groups in Downing Street saying that climate change is of secondary importance. What is striking is that, when we look at ministerial diaries, we see that Ministers have met representatives of fossil fuel companies nine times more frequently than companies representing renewables. Is it not clear that this Government are in the pockets of the fossil fuel industries and have in effect been captured by those corporations, which explains the asymmetric way in which the Government are operating in relation to the transition?

Photo of Alok Sharma Alok Sharma Minister without Portfolio , COP26 President (Cabinet Office)

This Government have not been captured by any interest. Once again, I point out to the hon. Member that, if he looks at the energy security strategy for the direction of travel, he will see that we are looking to quintuple the amount of both offshore wind and solar, and by 2050 we want a quarter of our electricity needs to come from nuclear. As far as I am concerned, if he looks at the detail of that, he will understand that we are focused on a clean energy future, and that is what we are delivering.