The biggest single contributor to greenhouse gas emissions is energy generation from burning fossil fuels – and Jean has consistently worked to promote switching to renewable, clean alternatives, like wind, solar and tidal, visiting renewable energy co-ops, campaigning to create the best legal and financial basis – in the UK and the EU – for constructing new facilities, and creating jobs at the same time.
In 2013, Jean hosted an event with Trade Unions and others calling for more public investment in renewable technologies here in the UK.
Jean has opposed EU drives to promote dirty nuclear energy, and played leading roles in the campaigns against both new oil and gas exploration – especially in the Arctic and Canada’s ‘Tar Sands’ – and ‘fracking’, both in London and elsewhere in England.
At the same time, Jean has actively promoted greater energy efficiency measures, especially for Londoners – whose draughty homes contribute to higher-than-necessary fuel bills, as well as climate change.
Britain stands at a crossroads in energy policy – with one direction leading towards more nuclear power stations, and the other to the sustainable exploitation of renewable energy sources.
The decision should be easy. Renewable energy is affordable, safe and clean and the UK has some of the best resources in Europe. Wind power at sea alone could meet our electricity needs three times over and bring thousands of jobs to the UK. Yet the Government is seriously considering a proposal to build 10 more nuclear power stations.
UK Emissions Trading Scheme
The EU has adopted a ‘cap-and-trade’ mechanism – known as the Emissions Trading System – for doing so; but it is fatally-flawed, and Jean, together with her Green colleagues, have tried to improve it at every step, voting to reduce the number of emission permits and to include aviation – the fastest-growing contributor to greenhouse gas emissions – in the ETS.