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Guernsey must act on climate change - St Pier

Guernsey must act on climate change - St Pier

Friday 04 October 2019

Guernsey must act on climate change - St Pier

Friday 04 October 2019

Whether you are a climate change believer or a sceptic, our Chief Minister says we have a shared responsibility to "lead the way" in contributing to positive change.

Policy & Resources President Gavin St Pier was one of the key speakers at the annual Institute of Directors Convention last night.

In an address to hundreds of business leaders at the climate change-themed event, Deputy St Pier was honest about the impact Guernsey can have globally. However, that cannot, he said, be used as an excuse to shy away from the issue. 

electric car ev

Pictured: E&I is introducing public charging points for electric vehicles. Some members of the IoD crowd wanted the States to further incentivise environmentally-friendly behaviour by supporting EV purchases. 

"Our climate change contribution, in global terms, amounts to three-eighths of the square root of nothing," he said. "However virtuous we choose to be it will make no difference, so long as the Chinese build coal power stations and the forests keep burning.

"It would be a perfectly rational policy choice to say there is no point and do nothing, but morally that is not a choice I am willing to be part of, or a policy choice that is consistent with our other policy positions."

Deputy St Pier said the "upside" associated with being more environmentally-friendly far outweighs the "downside". 

"If the sceptics are right the worst that can happen is that we will have slightly better sea defences than we need, and we'll have more electric vehicles on the roads more quickly than might otherwise have been the case.

"It doesn’t matter if you are a climate change believer or a sceptic - either way, we have the same once-in-a-generation opportunity for Guernsey to reposition and rebrand ourselves, and the responsibility rests on all of us."

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