We’re nearing the start of COP26, the largest environmental conference to have ever taken place in the UK, and will soon see world leaders congregate in Glasgow to ensure the continuation of the commitments made during the Paris climate agreement . All over the country, and across Meon Valley, people's individual choices can collectively make an enormous difference and COP26 gives the nation a chance to reflect on how we can reduce our energy consumption. The UK truly can be a centre for green industry and the framework is already in place, the UK has had the fastest declining emissions out of any country within the G7 as well as being the first nation that passed the Net Zero target into law and banning the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030. Our aim in Britain is to have reached a Net Zero greenhouse gas output by 2050 and COP26 will let us demonstrate the efforts that we’re making in Britain and show how those can be mimicked around the world.
Closer to home Hampshire County Council has also laid out several major steps to protect the environment in the local area including measures to ensure the protection of air quality and encouraging locally produced green energy meaning that Meon Valley will directly benefit. If you, or anyone you know, have made impressive or innovative efforts to cut emissions please get in contact with me as we’re currently striving to find UK Climate Leaders whose stories we can share with the world to demonstrate the effect that an individual can have. In May of this year I spoke in Parliament on how the Environment Bill and its targets will protect the soil and chalkland within the Constituency and shared many of the concerns and experiences that you, my constituents, had shared with me over the last several years. Furthermore both the River Itchen and the River Meon are protected under current legislation but still more can, and will, be done. Lastly I’ve also had the privilege of coming litter picking with several of you in Jubilee Park in Waterlooville as well in Rowlands Castle over the summer and so it’s been fantastic to see how communities have come together in order to protect their local areas. COP26 will be a pivotal event that will massively influence the future of this planet, as well as providing an opportunity for us to reflect on how we can ensure the survival and prosperity of the land in Meon Valley for generations to come.