Ethical Performance
inside intelligence for responsible business


Ministers blamed for climate change failure

April 2013

A third of the UK’s government ministers are associated with the finance and energy companies that contribute to climate change, claims the World Development Movement (WDM), an organisation that campaigns against the causes of poverty and injustice.

The WDM’s Web of Power report accuses four senior cabinet ministers  – foreign secretary William Hague, business secretary Vince Cable, chancellor of the exchequer George Osborne and education secretary Michael Gove - of having unacceptable and questionable connections.  

Some of the accusations include details of oil companies being assisted with tax problems and allegations that some ministers have also received large donations from fossil fuel businesses and hedge funds.

WDM director Deborah Doane said: “The City of London is bankrolling climate change, and the finance-energy complex at the heart of government is shoring up the companies that are pushing the planet towards catastrophe.

“Given the dense web of personal connections between government and the finance and fossil fuel industries, we have to ask whether the government’s failure to tackle climate change is down to the influence of ministers’ friends in banks and oil companies.   

“At the moment banks have to report the carbon emissions resulting from their office lighting, but they can pour money into coal mining and oil extraction without telling the public.”

The WDM has urged the government to force UK banks and financial institutions to reveal the amount of carbon emissions released by the fossil fuel companies they support.

World Development Movement | UK & NI Ireland | Climate change

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