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Illustration: Michael Gove tells climate protests 'We've got the message'

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Following protests led by Extinction Rebellion last week, the UK's Environment Minister finally responded to calls for a major change in policies.

When asked about the protests, Michael Gove replied "we've got the message". 

Do Something!

Image Credit: Beverley Irving

On the One Show on the 17th April, Gove was questioned about his opinion on the protests. He said: "I think it's appropriate for people to make their feelings known, but I also think that we've got the message, we understand that action needs to be taken.

"Some of the activity that's been going on in the streets has actually stopped people doing their jobs and also impeded, for example, people getting around London in a way that's appropriate."

Although the protests have been disruptive, Extinction Rebellion have claimed that they hope to raise awareness of the pressing issue of climate change and get the government's attention.

Gove continued, "the point's been made, let's make sure that we now move to a stage where we have a serious conversation about what we can do. The UK, under governments of different parties, has played a role in reducing carbon emissions and at the same time growing the economy, so we hvae shown that you can do both."

It was recently revealed that the UK is set to miss almost all its 2020 nature targets.

"There's more that we need to do to move away from fossil fuels. There's more we need to do... to ensure  the way we use our land, the way in which we plant more trees," Gove added.

Many would find the Environment Secretary's words hypocritical following an unerring policy to increase fracking as an industry in the UK. According to The Guardian, the new Fracking Plan ' will release same C02 as 300m new cars’.

Many are also growing increasingly concerned with the time Brexit is taking away from other, arguably more pressing, issues.

Priorities

Image Credit: Beverley Irving

Gove also stated that he hopes to hold a conference next year in the UK, five years on from Paris, in order to discuss what more can be done. 

A proposed date has not yet been announced. 

Lead Image: Beverley Irving




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