Council leader challenged on climate change view

CLIMATE change sceptic and Cambridgeshire County Council leader Nick Clarke has been sent a Christmas card signed by academics and campaigners across the county urging him to think again about his views on global warming.

The festive card, sent by Lib Dem councillor Sarah Whitebread and signed by academics and campaigners across the county, features a picture of a wind farm and refers to the county council’s decision not to allow wind turbines to be erected on county council-owned farms.

It urges Cllr Clarke to think again about the decision and “help to keep Cambridgeshire at the forefront of the green energy revolution”.

The card has been signed by Cambridge MP, Julian Huppert, Professor Douglas Crawford-Brown and Dr Terry Brown, from the Cambridge Centre for Climate Change Mitigation Research, and Craig Bennett, director of policy and campaigns at environmental charity Friends of the Earth.

It was sent to Cllr Clarke after he wrote a blog challenging the existence of climate change and claiming that even if it does exist it is not caused by human activity.

Cllr Whitebread, said: “I hope this card will act as a festive reminder to Cllr Clarke that his extreme views on climate change are not supported by the scientific community in Cambridgeshire.

“Green technology such as wind energy is a growing industry in the UK and Cambridgeshire should see the benefits of that - but Clarke’s policies are driving investment away.”

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The card coincided with a motion from Cllr Whitebread to the county council calling on it to reaffirm its commitment to climate change. It also asked for a reference to the implications of global warming to be included in all council committee and Cabinet reports after it was removed last year. The motion was defeated.

Cllr Whitebread added: “I’m staggered that the Conservatives supported Cllr Clarke on this. Rather than distancing themselves from his remarks, they seemed all too pleased to confirm their lack of concern over climate change.”

Cllr Clarke said: “Although it’s lovely to get a Christmas card, I wonder whether Julian Huppert and other urban-based well-wishers would be willing to promote obtrusive energy solutions in their towns’ green spaces as they want to impose on rural Cambridgeshire residents who already have their fair share of these wind turbines built around them.”

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