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"The most important issue of our time," Opposition calls to declare climate emergency

1 May 2019 (updated on 1 May 2019)

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MPs are debating the environment and climate change. The subject for debate was chosen by the Official Opposition.

Opening the Opposition Day debate on environment and climate change, the Leader of the Opposition, Jeremy Corbyn.

He called on the House to declare an environment and climate change emergency, saying;

"This is no longer about a distant future, we're talking about nothing less than the irreversible destruction of the environment within our lifetimes."

He spoke of the student climate change protests and said this was an opportunity to listen to young people, who he called "ahead of politicians" on the issue, and demonstrate that they had been heard. 

Responding for the Government, Michael Gove, the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs thanked members across the House and the devolved assemblies for work on climate change. He said;

“The environment belongs to all of us. The cause of climate change is a fight which unites us. All of us in the House have a common humanity that we need to defend.”

The motion was passed without a division. 

Related information

About Opposition day debates

Opposition days are days allocated in the House of Commons in each session for the discussion of subjects chosen by the Opposition.

Seventeen days are at the disposal of the Leader of the Opposition, the leader of the largest opposition party, to decide which matters are debated. Three days are usually divided between the other opposition parties.

The Opposition generally use them to raise questions of policy and administration. Frequently, two separate subjects are debated on an opposition day.

Watching Opposition day debates from the public gallery

UK residents and overseas visitors can watch proceedings in the House of Commons by visiting the public gallery.

Image: PA

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