Tag Archives: ed davey

Ed Davey MP writes…Tackling climate change

Flooding in Cedar Rapids, IAI’m writing from the Climate Change Summit in New York, hosted by UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon. While Liberal Democrats don’t need reminding just how much of a threat climate change is – from the increased risks of flooding, to the impact on the world’s poorest – I thought it timely to give you an update on the progress we’ve made and what comes next.

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Ed Davey: Non-nuclear energy approach is “negligent” and “risky” #slfconf

Ed Davey - photo by Paul WalterOn Monday, I summarised the appearances of Ed Davey at last weekend’s Social Liberal Forum conference in London. Here, I outline some of the views expressed and initiatives described by Ed on the day, including during a bloggers’ interview:

Using less energy

Fuel poverty is a serious issue. Energy inefficient building stock is a key cause.

The Green deal, Ed said, had not originally gone as well as it had been hoped. In Phase 1, there were just 250,000 assessments. Phase 2 is going better, and is on track to improve two million homes.

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Our Climate Change bulldog #slfconf

Ed Davey Social Liberal Forum conference Jul 19 2014 Photo by Paul Walter
WARNING: Contains strong hagiographic content, which some readers may find disturbing.

On Saturday, while much of the country was enjoying the sunshine, I spent two hours studying and listening to The Right Honourable Edward Davey MP FRSA.

In the wonderful surroundings of the new headquarters of Amnesty International, Ed addressed the Social Liberal Forum conference on “Energy and climate change – the balance between state and market”. He was then interviewed by four bloggers: Jonathan Calder, Matthew Hulbert,

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SLF Conference 2014 – Governing as Liberal Democrats

Social Liberal ForumThe Social Liberal Forum have organised their next conference to take place in London on this Saturday  19th July. You can register via the website. We have an excellent line up of speakers and all Liberal Democrats of various shades of opinion are very welcome to attend, and for that matter anyone outside the party who is interested in the Liberal Democrats.

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Lessons must be learned from the Jo Swinson speculation

jo swinson by paul walterOn Thursday, George Eaton of the New Statesman blogged that Jo Swinson was about to replace Ed Davey in the forthcoming Cabinet reshuffle.

Today, the Guardian’s Nick Watt says that this is not the case and Jo is expected to become Secretary of State for Scotland in September after the independence referendum.

Nick Clegg, acutely conscious that the five Liberal Democrat cabinet ministers are all men, is expected to promote the business minister Jo Swinson to the cabinet. But she is expected to succeed Alistair Carmichael as Scotland secretary after September’s independence referendum in September if, as expected, the pro-Union side prevails. Carmichael would be praised for his role in the victory as Swinson took charge on introducing greater devolution to the Scottish parliament.

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Edward Davey MP writes… A better deal for people on ‘pre-payment’ energy meters

Electric Meter on the Back of the HouseLiberal Democrats in Government are doing everything possible to help consumers with their energy bills.  Just last week I announced that by the end of the year energy suppliers will halve the time it takes to switch energy supplier from the current five to two and a half weeks.  This is just the first step to achieving my ambition of achieving 24 hour switching.

But there is more that can be done, and I have written to energy suppliers asking them to now focus on …

photo by: MRBECK
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Opinion: European Commission is right to demand Ed Davey and the Coalition re-thinks on nuclear power

Shearon Harris Nuclear Plant - Some rights reserved by John O DyerIn October 2013, Lib Dem energy secretary Ed Davey set out his arguments for reversing his long-held antipathy to nuclear power. On behalf of the Coalition, he is applying to the European Commission to ensure that the measures he is promoting – to ensure construction of the first new nuclear power station in the UK for a generation – are compatible with the Single Market.

But now the Competition Directorate of the European Commission has sent a 70-page rebuttal to the UK Government, completely rejecting its arguments for subsidising the building of the Hinckley B nuclear power station in Somerset.

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Ed Davey makes QR codes compulsory on energy bills

ed-davey-post-officeAccording to the BBC: Energy bills to come with compulsory QR barcodes. This is one of Ed Davey’s initiatives as Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change. He explains:

The government hopes its plans will encourage the development of smartphone apps that let consumers swipe their phone over an energy bill to read data such as tariff and consumption.

The data could then be automatically uploaded to price comparison sites, to let consumers look at deals from other energy suppliers.

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Après Nick: which Lib Dem MPs are best-placed to become the next Lib Dem leader?

Today’s Independent has an interesting story speculating on the Lib Dem leadership contest to come if the 2015 election result triggers Nick Clegg’s resignation. It’s one of the features of this parliament – perhaps linked to it being a fixed-term in which we know the dates are all known – that there hasn’t been nearly as much gossip about future leadership bids in any of the three main parties.

Anyway, the Indy story seeks to make up a little for that absence: Nick Clegg’s rivals for the Lib Dems leadership told to rev up. The premise of the article …

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Ed Davey’s speech to the IPPR on climate change

Here’s how the Guardian previewed Ed Davey’s speech this afternoon to the Institute for Public Policy Research:

Britain’s climate change policy is under threat from a “diabolical cocktail” of nimbyism, denial of science and fear of Europe from politicians on the right, the energy secretary will say on Thursday.

Amid growing warnings about a potential link between global warming and extreme UK weather, Ed Davey will raise concerns that the politicial consensus about the need to tackle climate change is in danger of breaking down as some in the Conservative and Ukip parties try to discredit the science.

He will say that the actions of climate deniers are “undermining public trust in the scientific evidence for climate change” and that “we can see around us today the possible consequences of a world in which extreme weather events are much more likely”.

In his speech at the IPPR thinktank on Thursday, Davey will criticise those who seize on “any anomaly in the climate data to attempt to discredit the whole”.

Taking aim at “climate change denying Conservatism”, which he calls wilfully ignorant, he warns that it could create a diabolical cocktail that threatens the whole long-term structure of UK climate change and energy policy.

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Ed Davey MP writes…£2m for low carbon heat networks

Ed Davey meets Paul Burstow and Sutton Councillors at Heat network funding...Today I visited Lib Dem controlled Sutton to announce £2 million of DECC funding for developing low carbon local heat networks. The money will go to 26 local authorities – including Sutton – to develop their own local projects.

By 2030 around 14% of UK heat demand could be met by these networks and around 43% by 2050. While it is up to each local authority to develop their own projects, the idea is that networks source heat from a central source – for example landfill – and then deliver it through insulated pipes to offices, apartments and social housing.

This will provide low carbon heating, and potentially bring down energy bills too.

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Edward Davey MP writes: Liberal Democrats continue to oppose Heathrow expansion

The Davies Commission’s interim report published yesterday has elicited many column inches in the newspapers but little clarity from the other two major parties as to the basis on which they will judge the final report.

In contrast, Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats made our approach to the Davies Commission clear yesterday. We will not endorse an expansion in airport capacity which would increase noise pollution for the hundreds of thousands of residents living beneath the flight path or break the Committee on Climate Change’s recommendations on aviation. Of course we will look at what the final …

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Ed Davey: Energy customers are not just cash cows

Ed Davey - Some rights reserved by Liberal DemocratsEd Davey’s speech to Energy UK today has been well trailed in the media. The headline features a much quoted soundbite: “Customers are not just cash cows to be squeezed in the pursuit of a higher return for shareholders”.

It was one of those occasions when the whole discussion took place ahead of the actual event, with Energy UK (which represents the energy industry) posting a ripost before the speech had been delivered.

Here is an extract from Ed’s speech:

We need our energy companies

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Ed Davey forms European green alliance to help Cameron win global race

You might not think that the Liberal Democrat Energy and Climate Change Secretary Edward Davey was key to Prime Minister’s David Cameron’s plans to “win the global race”, but you’d be wrong.

Davey is a key proponent of the need to work with allies in Europe to drive through EU reforms that benefit Britain in the world, something we feel strongly about at British Influence.

While a Minister at the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills, he set up the Like-minded Group of EU ministers, to drive economic growth in the EU and cut back on

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Ed Davey nails Labour’s energy price freeze: “Prices go up, small, independent competitors go out of business, the big six is created again. Well done, Mr Miliband!”

Here’s Lib Dem energy secretary Ed Davey highlighting one of the many flaws in Ed Miliband’s promise to freeze energy prices in today’s Guardian interview:

ed davey energy prices

(Hat-tip: John Rentoul in The Independent: Quotation of the Day.)

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Alistair Carmichael MP writes…how the Lib Dems in government worked together for Grangemouth

Three weeks ago when I was appointed as Secretary of State for Scotland many journalists and commentators (and even a few posters on Lib Dem Voice!) forecast a period of strife ahead as the “bruiser” from the Whips’ Office took over at Dover House.

I am not expecting anyone to say they were wrong but I hope that maybe some of them are feeling just a little sheepish this weekend.

The threat to the future of the petro-chemical plant at Grangemouth was one of the most serious to face Scotland for several years. It also produced a degree of political unity and …

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Grangemouth: a summary of Liberal Democrat reaction

It’s a grim day in Central Scotland as 800 people face losing their jobs at Grangemouth. It’s impossible to overestimate the effect that Ineos’s decision to close the petrochemical plant, which shares the site with Scotland’s only refinery, will have on the Scottish economy.

There are still some hopes that Ineos can be persuaded to reverse their decision, which was based on the Unite trade union’s rejection of changes to terms and conditions of employment. A further meeting takes place this morning. Unite are reported to have offered major concessions. Logic would dictate that if they’ve been offered what they want, Ineos should keep the plant open. We will have to wait and see.

If Ineos don’t change their minds, efforts will shift to finding a new buyer for the site

It’s been good to see Scotland’s two governments working together very collaboratively, broadly saying the same sorts of things. In the UK government, three Liberal Democrats share responsibility for this: Ed Davey, Alistair Carmichael and Vince Cable. Here’s what they and others have been saying:

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Ed Davey writes… Keeping down household energy bills

House of Commons at NightYesterday, I outlined why Labour’s energy policies would be bad for consumers, bad for tackling climate change and risk the lights going out.

However misguided Ed Miliband’s energy policies are there is no doubt that he was seeking to respond to the fact that many consumers are feeling the pinch through rising energy bills. The recent price increases by SSE and British Gas will hit consumers hard and I am afraid there will be more to come.

So what is our response?

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Salmond scores a massive own goal on Royal Mail

This week, Alex Salmond told Scots that their postal service would get worse if they voted for independence. Of course he didn’t actually say those words, but it’s the effect of his proposal. At First Minister’s Questions on Thursday, he said that an independent Scotland led by him would bring the Royal Mail and postal service back into public ownership.

Let’s just leave aside the hundreds of millions that would cost for a minute, as well as the complexities of breaking up a UK wide service and defining the Scottish share. The biggest problem that would arise would be that …

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Conference Preview: Sunday 15th September

This is the second part of my meander through the conference agenda. You can find Saturday’s here.

Those Powers that Be don’t miss a trick, do they? Part of Conference’s job is to scrutinise the party committees. So, when do they put on the report of the most unaccountable committee in the Party, the Federal Finance and Administration Committee? First thing on Sunday morning when many representatives will be sleeping off the effects of the Glasgow ales and whiskies from the night before. Immediately after comes the vote of the Parliamentary Parties. If you have any questions about, for example, …

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Ed Davey MP writes… Keeping the lights on with greener energy

Hopefully by the time you’ve read this you’ll be aware of the details I announced this morning to secure the future of energy supply for the UK – if not, and excuse the pun –  let me enlighten you.

As you know already, we have a plan in the form of the Energy Bill that is progressing well through Parliament.  The plan essentially addresses a major issue – we need to attract £110 billion of private sector investment to replace the supply we lose as a result of 20% of our power stations closing by the end of this

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Kingston Lib Dems’ council leader Derek Osbourne arrested on suspicion of possessing indecent images of children

Lib Dems in Kingston have been left shocked by the sudden resignation of council leader Derek Osbourne following his arrest on suspicion of possessing indecent images of children.

The news broke on Wednesday, with the local paper reporting a statement by Cllr Liz Green, acting leader of Kingston Council: “Derek Osbourne has resigned from the Liberal Democrat group. We are deeply shocked by these allegations but I am unable to comment further as we must now allow the police the time and space they need to investigate the allegations thoroughly and without prejudice.”

The paper reports today that he …

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LibLink…Ed Davey MP: I want to see a community energy revolution in the UK

Ed Davey has been writing in the Guardian about grassroots energy projects.

He tells us the Government has commissioned research to find out what encourages people to get involved in community energy projects in the hope of generating more across the UK. So, what are these projects?

People across the country are coming together to change the way we think about our energy system and their relationship with it. From a community-run advice service in Hampshire that promotes energy efficiency to a community-owned windfarm just north of Swansea, to a renewable heat project in Herefordshire that replaces fossil fuels with locally grown

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Stephen Gilbert writes … Liberal Democrats should be proud of the Energy Bill

Energy-bills-006The Energy Bill will, today and tomorrow, be  going through its Report Stage and Third Reading in the Commons.  Ed Davey set out clearly on Lib Dem Voice why this is so important for decarbonising our power sector and keeping on the lights at an affordable price for consumers.  As a party we should be pleased that there is general cross-party support for the bill as it is vital that we maintain as far as we are able cross party consensus to provide the certainty for investors for our transition …

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Andrew George MP writes…Liberal Democrats must defend green promise

It’s crunch time for parties across the political spectrum: will parliamentarians do the right thing for our climate and the UK economy or will they let the sceptics drive investors overseas?

The Energy Bill returns to the Commons next week, just as the Conservatives are retreating to their traditional political stomping grounds in the face of competition from the right. Writing in Lib Dem Voice last month, Nick Clegg noted that: “Compassionate conservatism has been sidelined…the blue team used to claim to have gone green, yet have now publicly denounced the importance of environmental protections”. It’s up to the Liberal Democrats to …

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Vince Cable talks sense on immigration

Vince Cable has spoken up for the economic benefits of immigration in the Queen’s Speech debate, challenging the half truth and hyperbole in the illiberal rhetoric that’s doing the rounds at the moment. He reserved much of his ire for the Labour party:

I was hesitant about raising the subject because it is essentially covered by the Home Office, but substantial economic issues are also involved and it is important to refer to them. I was provoked into feeling that we should debate the issue in this context because a couple of days ago I was on the radio on the

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The Independent View: Voters support pro-wind energy candidates

Nine months ago Nick Clegg made his Leader’s speech to Conference in front of a backdrop featuring wind turbines. There followed months of speculation about the relationship between Lib Dem Energy Secretary Edward Davey and his junior Minister John Hayes, until the latter was moved. So were Clegg and Davey right to be so forthright in support? New polling numbers suggest so, despite what certain fossilised parts of the media would have us believe.

Over the last year there’s been a slew of opinion polls showing strong support for wind – as Davey said to the Parliamentary Renewable and Sustainable Energy …

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Opening shortly: Autumn conference 2013 registration

We are delighted to announce that members’ registration will open shortly for Autumn 2013 Federal Conference in Glasgow. We very excited that Conference is making a return to Scotland after many years’ absence.

The event will take place at the SECC (Scottish Exhibition and Conference Centre), Exhibition Way, Glasgow, from 10am on Saturday 14th September to around 3:30pm on Wednesday 18th September. The conference hotel will be the Crowne Plaza.

In order to cut down on costs and be more environmentally friendly, there is a discount available for those who are content not to receive any papers …

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Roger Williams MP writes…Why I’m backing Tim Yeo’s Energy Bill amendments – and urging my colleagues to join me

It’s hard to believe, but more than a year has passed since Ed Davey stepped into Chris Huhne’s shoes at the Department of Energy and Climate Change.

Ed has spent much of that time fighting George Osborne and the Treasury to ensure that the Energy Bill – a once-in-a-generation opportunity to direct £110bn of investment towards a clean energy future – achieves its stated aims: cut carbon, secure our electricity supply, and rein in household fuel bills.

These are the aims of Liberal Democrats everywhere, and credit must be given to Ed for the vigour with he has pursued

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Eastleigh by-election: your essential round-up of the week’s campaign news

Mike_ThorntonIt’s only just over a week since the Eastleigh by-election was called. But this first Lib Dem / Tory by-election battle of the parliament has attracted a lot of interest. One aspect that hasn’t been noted much in the media is the level of enthusiasm within the Lib Dems to fight this by-election, and fight it to win.

As the party’s weekly briefing itself noted, Mike Thornton’s campaign has broken the party’s by-election records, with “more volunteers, more money raised and more campaign literature delivered in the opening days of the Eastleigh by-election campaign than any other”.

Here a few of the stats:

  • Well over 1,000 Lib Dem volunteers have visited the by-election HQ since it was officially opened on Saturday morning.
  • On Thursday alone, 2,200 phone calls were made to prospective voters and activists knocked on 1,700 doors.
  • More than 650 individual donations have been received through the party’s website and through email appeals in the last six days.
  • 21 of the party’s 57 MPs have already visited: Nick Clegg, Danny Alexander, Ed Davey, Vince Cable, Sir Malcolm Bruce, Sir Nick Harvey, Tim Farron, Jo Swinson, David Laws, Duncan Hames, Andrew Stunell, Simon Wright, Sir Robert Smith, Stephen Gilbert, Tom Brake, Roger Williams, Don Foster, John Leech, Tessa Munt, Mark Williams, John Pugh and Adrian Sanders.

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