Government contracts need net-zero commitment

Boris Johnson addressed young climate activists from around the world via video link at the Youth4Climate conference in Milan, admitting that the audience had a right to be angry at the lack of progress toward net-zero.

Youth4Climate is the last stage before Cop26 in Glasgow and Johnson followed Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi, who said politicians needed to be "whipped into action." Draghi also suffered several interruptions as the mood of the audience turned on politicians.

Johnson effectively accepted that progress was too slow, saying that, “young people around the world are already paying the price for the reckless actions of their elders”.

He continued: “Your future is being stolen before your eyes, and I saw the protestors earlier on, and frankly you have every right to be angry with those who aren’t doing enough to stop it.”

However, he attempted to sound an upbeat note, pointing to COP26 as a pivotal moment in tackling the issue saying that it could mark "the beginning of the end of climate change".

The Government has announced that it will require businesses bidding for major Government contracts worth more than £5m to commit to achieving net-zero emissions in a move that is designed to underscore the Prime Minister’s commitment to real action. The UK is the first country in the world to put such a measure in place.

The requirement will help deliver the manifesto promises to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2050. The requirements will apply to any companies bidding for contracts worth more than £5m a year, not just those who are successful.

Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster Steve Barclay said: “Government spends £290bn a year on procurement and it’s right that we use this spending power to green the economy.”

The new requirements come into effect ahead of international climate conference COP26, with officials at the event working closely with climate experts and campaigners to encourage other countries to follow the UK’s example.

    Share Story:

Recent Stories