Below is a transcription of the speech given by Adam Woodhall at the Climate Justice Demo in front of the Tate Modern museum. You can watch it here.
"This is a really important day in taking climate action in the world, but I’m going to start off with something that might surprise you a little bit in what I’m saying because fossil fuels are great. And no, I’m not a fan of the Donald.
The reason why I say that is because actually if it wasn’t for fossil fuels we wouldn’t have the society that we have at the moment. This phone that I’m holding in my hand, the Boris bike that I cycled today, the kettle that was powered by the energies from fossil fuels mainly, all of them due to fossil fuels.
So they are really important. They have been crucial to getting us to this point that we are now. But they’re not right for our future. We’ve got to go on a transition and today what I’m going to talk to you about is how maybe we take that transition from disproportionate use of fossil fuels to a low carbon future.
I like the society I live in. This phone’s pretty cool. Cycling around on the Boris bike’s great. Being able to go into that fabulous museum behind you is brilliant. So it’s how do we keep that and also have much less fossil fuels because that magnificent building behind you was actually obviously a power station. It was fuelled by oil. In fact, at its peak it would use 16,000 tonnes of oil a day and it was going for over 100 years nearly.
In Britain and beyond, businesses large and small are getting on with a rapid transition to renewables, despite mixed messages coming from the UK government.
Some examples of positive messages from the UK Government are: approving the Fifth Carbon Budget in June; Nick Hurd, the Minister for Industry and Climate Change, stating in September that “I am very keen to work with business to ensure that the Emissions Reduction Plan is credible and sufficiently substantial”; and then in October, the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, Greg Clark, promising to “upgrade” the UK's clean energy system. There was, however, a lack of specific policy pledges from Clark, and the Hinkley Point C nuclear power plant has been approved and even more surprisingly, in February 2017 the government suggested that it will either take away subsidies or increase taxes on renewables.
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