The UK has done a “huge amount” to tackle climate change that “other countries are learning from”, a government spokesperson has said, as a new initiative was launched marking 100 days until the COP26 summit is held in Glasgow.
Allegra Stratton, who made the comments on Sky News, was unable to “get into” questions over plans for oil field extensions and a new coal mine in Cumbria.
Ms Stratton, the government’s COP26 spokesperson, was speaking as One Step Greener was launched on Saturday.
The initiative is intended to showcase how people from all walks of life are doing their bit for the environment.
British racing driver Alice Powell, one of the 26 ambassadors for One Step Greener, arrived at Downing Street in an environmentally friendly racing car to meet Ms Stratton on Friday.
Wind and solar power have been used to help tackle climate change
COP26, the United Nations climate change conference, also known as COP26, will be take place between 31 October to 12 November.
Speaking to Sky News on Saturday, the government’s COP26 spokesperson said the government has “done so much” to speed up on delivering on its climate change pledges ahead of the summit.
She continued: “You have got the PM’s 10-point plan for a green industrial revolution. Also you heard last week that our de-carbonising carbon plan that (Transport Secretary) Grant Shapps outlined.
“In the coming weeks and months before COP26 you will hear the net zero strategy.”
However, when asked about an inquiry into the opening of a new coal mine in Cumbria and plans for oil field extensions, she replied: “With both those examples, I am going to be frustrating because I can’t get into it. The Cumbria oil mine is a judicial process so I can’t get into it.”
She continued: “What is important… is in 2012, this country got 40% of its power from coal.
“Now it’s 1.5%.”
Subscribe to ClimateCast on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or Spreaker
Ms Stratton was also asked whether it is “awkward” that the UK will be encouraging other countries to commit more money to tackling climate change when the government is cutting its foreign aid budget.
She replied: “We have ringfenced the international climate budget – Britain is putting £11.6bn into international climate finance.”
Ms Stratton was also asked about whether she was concerned about losing social consent over the so-called “pingdemic”.
She replied: “There are strict guidelines on what I am here to talk about… in terms of my role in Whitehall I have to speak about COP26.”