Memories, Successes, Sadness…. a Green Brexit Goodbye C

With the second hand ticking to the end of the Brexit ‘transition’ – heavy hearts, and not a little despair, an appropriate time to look back again at the Green Party’s time in Europe. This was all filmed during the UK’s last week in the EU, and our  Green MEP’s last few days in the European Parliament back in January.

Take your pick ..  shed tears as England’s last Green MEP share their last moments in this 14 minutes film.

Or the shortened version in a 3 minute clip


Justice for Palestine, Life Under Occupation: is there a path to equality and peace?

The COVID-19 lockdown and our continued response to containing the coronavirus is giving many of us in the UK a tiny glimmer of what it is to live life as a Palestinian: living under constant threat; subject to curfews; road blocks and checkpoints; restrictions on visits to family, land or workplaces, except by the whim of the authorities; and unable to see family, even children, in hospital.

Much has changed in the international and political sphere since last year, when as MEP, I embarked on my third trip to Israel and Palestine. Israel’s new coalition Government has announced plans to annex significant parts of the occupied Palestinian West Bank. This has been condemned by The United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) as violating a cornerstone principle of international law and must be meaningfully opposed by the international community.

As the UK is heading to leave the EU, we as UK citizens must focus pressure on the UK government to use its leverage to effect change in policy towards Israeli Government’s defiance of international law.

I hope you will take some time to read my report: Justice for Palestine, Life Under Occupation: is there a path to equality and peace?  In a brief description of the situation as I experienced it last year, the report includes some short video interviews with a handful of some incredibly resilient people I met in East Jersualem and the West Bank who describe some of their frustrations first hand. I outline some of the initiatives and work the of European Parliament in which I was involved during my short spell as a UK MEP.

Perhaps most importantly in the section on action to support equal rights for Palestinians, I summarise a range of responses we as UK citizens can push for, and I list them below.

For citizens concerned about global security, human rights, and justice, Palestine demands attention. Ending the illegal restrictions, punitive conditions and inequalities imposed on Palestinian civilians is a necessary prerequisite for peace for all peoples living in the region.

Action to support equal rights for Palestinians

1.Develop a Strong Response t the Threatened Annexation of the West Bank

2.Halt Free and Unchecked Trade with Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories

-Call for a Boycott of goods and products from illegal Israeli settlements in line with the aims of the Boycott, Divest and Sanctions (BDS) campaign

-Identify products originating from the occupied West Bank

-Boycott companies colluding with and benefitting from the Occupation

-Divest from companies complicit in the Occupation

  1. Fight against antisemitism while supporting Palestinian self-determination
  2. Stop Arms Trade with Israel
  3. Stop Financing the Israeli Defence Industry
  4. Support NGOs protecting Human Rights such as the International Criminal Court, Human Rights Watch and the UN.


New report from Green House think tank on getting to zero carbon trade

A huge challenge facing us right now in how we deal with the climate crisis, is that Trade and Climate policy are currently pulling in different directions. How do we reconcile trade and climate negotiations?

Green House Think Tank has launched a excellent new report ‘Trade and Investment Requirements for a Zero Carbon Economy‘, which answers the obvious policy question currently ignored by Government on future trade deals: How do we reduce the climate impact of trade?

“Around one third of total global emissions are embodied in goods and services that are traded internationally. The most significant direct impact of global trade is the carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels to power ships, lorries and planes. International aviation and shipping alone emitted 1.24 billion
tonnes of greenhouse gases in 2017. Road transport accounts for just over half of global, trade-related carbon emissions, and the domestic leg of global supply chains.”

The report looks at the necessary principles which must underpin our approach to trade deals. The UK must address the scale of international trade, the
distance goods are transported and the modes of transport used. How do we get to smaller, shorter and slower trade to help achieve zero carbon economies ?

-Globally we must reduce, not increase the amount of internationally traded goods

– We have to shorten supply chains at all levels

– We have to reduce the speed of trade -moving from air freight to shipping, shipping to rail freight.

The report looks at the ‘blockers’ and’ enablers’ to achieve this.

Our previous Green New Deal for the North West report highlighted the key areas that need addressing within the North West – indeed within any economy for focussing on climate action: Energy supply, Industry, Land Use, Buildings and Transport.

This report adds the vital component of what needs to be tackled in terms of trade.

Download the report here:




Hydrogen: the potential and the pitfalls

Hydrogen could play an key role in our future energy supply – but only if its produced from renewable electricity. Watch this short summary of the pros and cons of hydrogen as a renewable energy source: a presentation given by the WWF Climate and Energy team, at a workshop I hosted in the European Parliament just before the end of January. Hydrogen fuel cell technology is now on the agenda in the UK. We must ensure the Government gets it right. It will not solve all our energy problems, but it could help play a part.


Getting up to speed with hydrogen: students talk about Hyschool and climate literacy

With the Government showing some interest in hydrogen this summer- its now getting topical. Yet Manchester Metropolitan University has already developed a programme about hydrogen information. A few months ago I interviewed staff and student from MMU about their role in hydrogen education and in climate literacy. Watch this 12 minute summary of what they are doing…