Hartlepool by-election Liberal Democrat candidate attacks Tory climate change 'bluster'
A candidate in an upcoming Parliamentary by-election has attacked what he sees as the Government’s lack of commitment to tackling climate change.
Andy Hagon, the Liberal Democrat candidate in the Hartlepool poll, believes recent targets announced by Prime Minister Boris Johnson are merely “gesture politics”.
Mr Johnson has pledged to reduce emissions by 78% by 2035 as part of a new Carbon Budget.
But Mr Hagon, who was born and raised in Hartlepool, said: "The Conservative Government are already miles off track to achieve their 2050 net zero targets and we are yet to see anything but bluster from ministers when it comes to actually taking the action necessary.
"These new targets are just another in a long line of announcements where the Tories are simply paying lip service to tackling the climate crisis.
"In the last few months they’ve scrapped the Green Homes Grant, that helped people cut emissions from their homes, and have cut incentives for buying new electric vehicles.
"We believe the time for climate action is now. The Tories should be taking real action rather than gesture politics."
Mr Hagon's comments follow the Liberal Democrats announcement of a £150bn green coronavirus recovery plan.
Around £48bn would be directed towards councils to fund green infrastructure and investments and to improve local environments.
Schoolteacher Mr Hagon, who previously stood for the Lib Dems in Hartlepool at the 2017 and 2019 General Elections, is one of 16 candidates vying to become the town’s next MP on Thursday, May 6.
The by-election was called following the sudden resignation of Labour’s Mike Hill in March.