DISTRICT councillor for Dursley Doina Cornell has criticised Stroud MP Neil Carmichael over his government’s "two-faced" attitude to combatting climate change.

Painting a pessimistic picture of the government’s commitment to the environment, Doina, who holds a seat for Labour on Stroud District Council, accused Conservatives of bringing through a string of attacks on green policies since the party achieved a majority in May’s election.

Despite "fine speeches and hot air" at the Paris Climate Conference, she said, the government had a pursued a series of attacks on environmental policies, including scrapping support for onshore wind and solar subsidies and fracking.

“As a member of Gloucestershire Climate Action Network I met Neil Carmichael twice this year to discuss measures to combat climate change, locally and nationally,” said Doina.

“He told us he supported renewable energy, and mentioned developing carbon capture and community energy schemes as good things.

“Within months the government had axed support for both of these.

“Not to mention their prematurely ending support for wind and solar energy sectors, losing thousands of jobs and investment in the process.”

Cllr Cornell also pointed to Mr Carmichael’s support in a vote to allow fracking exploration licenses for companies to search for shale gas in national parks – including parts the Forest of Dean and part of Berkeley Vale.

“Stroud can now look forward to a future caught in a dirty pincer movement with fracking and the incinerator to the west poisoning our air and water - and to the south a nuclear power station,” she added.

“What a charming legacy the Tories will leave us. We could lead the world in an energy revolution but all we get from our government is fine speeches and hot air.”

Mr Carmichael defended the government’s policies, saying Britain was leading the way on climate change.

“The UK, working together with our European partners, took a leading role in securing the historic global deal in Paris last year to halt climate change,” he said.

“It’s wrong to claim we are not tackling this issue – we will be one of the first countries to take coal out of the equation, building a new clean energy infrastructure around gas, nuclear and renewables.

“Our policy is to decarbonise the energy sector – but this must be done at the lowest possible cost to the consumer.”

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