More than twenty supporters of local charity Winchester Action on Climate Change went to Westminster on Wednesday 17 June to join the largest mass lobby of Parliament on climate change in UK history. 9,000 people queued across the Thames, speaking to more than 250 MPs to urge them to take action to protect everything we love that is threatened by changes in the climate, from chocolate to surfing.

Local MPs Steve Brine and George Hollingbery invited six WinACC representatives into the House of Commons for a half-hour meeting to set out their views.

WinACC told the MPs that expert evidence shows beyond doubt that the world is warming. If we don’t act now, the temperature will go up by more than 2 degrees. This will be dangerous for our children and grandchildren, and for wildlife and the natural world.

The global conference on climate change in Paris this December is the last chance to get a world-wide agreement for action by every nation to stop our planet getting too hot. 

Tony Stoller, WinACC’s Chair, recalled that David Cameron pledged in February to seek a global climate deal which limits temperature rises to below 2oC and to end the use of unabated coal for power generation. He asked the MPs to do all they can to support a global goal to phase out pollution from fossil fuels to achieve 100% clean safe energy by 2050, and create a fair, strong, legally binding global climate deal which limits temperature rises to below 2oC. 

Andy Smale from Expert Energy group explained that there is also a strong business case for action. Tackling climate change is good for the economy, creating jobs and prosperity as well as safeguarding our energy security. 

WinACC asked the MPs to take messages to Government, including the need for a long-term Government investment plan for renewable energy, to make it a priority to make 2 million low-income homes energy efficient by 2020, and to require new homes to be zero-carbon. 

They emphasised how important MPs can be in talking to local people, explaining that it is urgent and important to act for the sake of all we love.

“We were heartened by the response from our two MPs, who are as keen on this as we are” said Tony Stoller. “They are very supportive of all the efforts that are being made to make sure we get a legally binding deal in Paris. So we asked them to urge our Government to take the lead in Paris to press all the nations to protect us from the potentially catastrophic effects of global warming.”