Promoted by David Beale, 36 Pleasant View, Withnell, Chorley PR6 8SE on behalf of Martin Powell-Davies of TUSC.

Friday 14 June 2024

My pledge as a workers' MP for Chorley - Stop Climate Catastrophe

Chorley voters have been writing to me to ask that I pledge support for issues that are of particular concern to them. So that they are on the record for all voters, I am posting my response on some of the key issues here, on my blog:

There are fewer more pressing issues than combating climate change through stopping new oil and gas and making a rapid transition to renewable energy. The reasons for taking urgent action are scientifically unopposable - but that science now needs to be acted upon with absolute urgency.

However, for too many years, capitalist politicians have made promises about taking climate action but, in practice, have continued largely with business as usual - and with the fossil fuel companies it is a very profitable business of course.

The world requires massive investment in renewable energy and transforming industry and infrastructure. However, private ownership means giant corporations dominate the economy and they always put short-term profits first. Competition between capitalist states, and between individual capitalists, also prevents the global collaboration needed. 

That's why, in order to stop and reverse climate change and fight its effects, a global systematic change is required. Transformation on the scale needed needs global planning, investment and coordination. I believe that only a socialist society, with nationalisation of energy, and the world’s biggest banks and companies, can allow for the use of resources to be planned democratically by the working class. This is what is needed to provide tangible solutions to climate crisis, and ensure a safe and decent life for all.

The working class mustn’t be made to pay for the climate crisis that is not of their making. There needs to be a fully-funded and planned transition for oil and gas workers and the communities that depend on them, with a clear plan for investment in alternative jobs and training, a real "Green Industrial Revolution".

As a long-standing trade unionist I would want to use my role as an MP to help bring together workers, trade unions, scientific and technical experts, alongside environmental campaigners, to work out a commonly agreed transition plan with nationalisation ensuring this is enacted on the basis of urgent need - instead of the issue again being 'kicked down the road' by big business backed parties to protect the interests of the fossil fuel profiteers.

Unlike the formally 'impartial Speaker', as a workers' MP for Chorley, I would use my position to help build a mass movement demanding change, the approach which I believe is the best strategy for success.

As I explained in this article that I wrote ahead of last year's COP28 talks: "Our task is to bring together those drawn into action over climate change with those fighting back over low wages, housing, inequality and all the other failings of crumbling capitalism. A mass movement built on those forces would have the strength to force the world’s capitalist politicians to actually enact some of their climate pledges – but, above all, it would have the strength to take decision making out of their failed hands and into the hands of the workers of the world. That would at last bring about a genuine global collaboration, utilising the world’s resources for the benefit of all, not for the short-term gain of a wealthy elite who have put the future of our planet at risk".

[ See also this accompanying response on 'people and planet' ]

Martin Powell-Davies
Trade Unionist and Socialist Candidate for Chorley.

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