What the Conservative victory means for #Manchester and #climate

So, at a national level, here’s what to expect for climate and energy policy

-“Energy and climate policy are even more absolutely doomed. Prepare for onshore wind turbines to begin disappearing, fracking underfoot, no 2030 [renewable energy] targets…” (quote from somebody who knows a very small amount about these things).

At a local/regional level, Manchester City Council and Greater Manchester have been shockingly useless on keeping their climate promises. And whenever you point out specifics, Labourbots change the subject and Blame the Tories.  Look forward to another 5 years of that (with July’s climate report, which will whine about the National Grid changing its metrics as the reason for Manchester not having made any emissions cuts since 2009 on the way to the 2020 “41% reduction.)

ALSO at a local level, the absence of any political opposition in the Council chamber will mean the same old complacency, broken promises and stupidity.  Yesterday someone hoped on Facebook for some Green councillors in Manchester.  A devastatingly good-looking, intelligent, successful and popular commentator retorted –

The Greens have no winnable wards. Labour councillor votes are always higher in a general election too. And the existing Labour councillors have shown what they are made of (not much) in the last year when there has been no official opposition. They are simply unwilling to jeopardise their friendships/career prospects by asking the tough questions more than once, and refusing to be fobbed off with bullshit answers that are *demonstrably* false. That’s the state of play. The greens aren’t going to get their act together, the social movements aren’t either. And in the absence of that, Labour and the bureaucracy will become ever more complacent and brazen in their contempt for truth and the long-term prospects of this city that can’t be quantified as “inward investment”.

And nationally on non-climate/energy/environment?  Get your hip replacements done now, cos there ain’t gonna be no NHS in five years.  The Tories now have a mandate for all of the stuff they DIDN’T have a mandate for five years ago.

And what is to be done? This, from my good friend and MCFly cartoonist Marc.

I opted to wait til this morning for the result and have awoken to the knowledge that a “majority” of my countryman care nothing for fairness, even-handedness, decency or the future of their own children. That so many millions have opted to squeeze the life out of all that our grandparents built and fought for in the name of an extra holiday in the Algarve or a few more Sky channels is a bitter dissappointment and a damning indictment of the moral state of our society under late capitalism. The knowledge that it is late capitalism – that its days are surely numbered by its own logic- is no consolation. We had a chance to save what we could – to repurpose selfishness for better aims – but we seem to have opted for “one more for the road” and “Devil take the hindmost” and it makes me sad. Profit once more triumphs over people. But on we go. To despair would be to fail ourselves and our children and to hand over our souls as well as our nation. Now the Tories will crack on with the great fire sale. We must crack on with building a real alternative and put aside all the petty differences that have for so long plagued the divided “left” (whatever that means, now). Nil desperandum brothers and sisters. We will not go gently into the dark night of a new feudalism.
From where I live the country still looks beautiful. The Spring still bursts with life and possibility and the land is still ours. I look more warily at neighbours who have chosen – in ignorance or callousness or simple idiocy – to put me and mine in harm’s way, but I will not stoop to mimic their casual brutality. Life is precious and each one is worth a thousand times the thirty pieces of silver that the haves have taken to throw the have-nots to the wolves. So keep standing for life and hope. Take time to digest and renew yourselves, and come together anew. This is not the last scene in this drama, although we are undoubtedly in the last act.
Go well and do what must be done, with your heads high. Namaste.


About manchesterclimatemonthly

Was print format from 2012 to 13. Now web only. All things climate and resilience in (Greater) Manchester.
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