Author Archives: Alex Meredith

This Weekend You Can Help Stop the Climate Emergency

I’ll admit it, I do not always come to conference fully prepared.  Well, to be honest, I’m often reading the motions or amendments for the first time in the hall.  As a result I have sat in debates and wondered “why has Y been carved out” or “why hasn’t this great idea been extended to X” and occasionally “how on earth has line Z made it in”!

I know I am not the only one –speakers in debates often raise everything from minor tweaks to wholly new directions in policy in their speeches and interventions, only for a summation speech to respond with the reproving reminder “some good points have been made and we would have liked to have considered them at the consultation stage but alas they were not raised…..”

Well conference-goers, do not spend your weekend being (as I have) a disappointed would-be policy tweaker. Bring your ideas to the Consultative Sessions!

In particular, as a member of the snappily-titled Climate Change and Low-Carbon Economy Policy Working Group I want to urge you to come and spend your Saturday lunchtime in our clean, green company.

The Working Group has produced an initial consultation paper, but detailed policy formulation is still at an early stage so your thoughts, ideas and inspiration on this cornerstone of Lib Dem policy would be very welcome.  We put forward some excellent policies in the 2017 manifesto that have been developed recently by the Vision for Britain: Clean, Green and Carbon Free report.  Our task as a Working Group is to build on this strong base.

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A former candidate reflects on the diversity motion

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As a white, straight, able-bodied, British man who was a candidate last May and has aspirations to run again, I wanted to offer the perspective of one of the ‘over-represented’ as we approach Sunday’s diversity debate.

When I saw the text, the realisation that the motion would have significant consequences for me and my ilk was unavoidable.  The motion promises us training and support and that we will be ‘valued’.  But along with positive discrimination in general election selections we are also promised proposals on wider party diversity including in party structures and local government.  The feeling I experienced on reading the motion must be akin to turkey being offered training and support in the run up to a gender-neutral, multi-faith Winter festival.

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 18 Comments

Opinion: Rational energy policy must be central to 2015 manifesto

The alarm raised by the Chief Executive of Ofgem earlier this week over a looming energy ‘near crisis’ will not have come as a shock to most people. This is not the first time we have heard how our islands will struggle to support increasing energy demands in a carbon constrained world.

However, the major insight that Ofgem has provided relates to timing. Ofgem’s analysis points very clearly to 2015 as being the critical year when our reliance on imported gas could lead to a major spike in bills.

Lest we forget, 2015 is also the year of the next general election. …

Posted in Op-eds | Tagged and | 25 Comments
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