The bill lost by only a handful of votes. If just 4 Labour MPs had joined their 26 'rebel' colleagues they would have one. Needless to say loyalist MP Martin Salter who pretends to be a rebel voted along with the majority of his party.
Well done to those who voted for the bill, including Reading East Rob Wilson. Unfortunately 39 Tories didn't show up, along with 69 Lab. It's worth noting, as well, that the Lib Dems, who do lots of talking about the environment, saw 13 of their MPs not bothering to vote either...including Nick Clegg, Chris Huhne and Vince Cable. Inspiring. Remind me what they are paid for again?
Had they been victorious, the government would have been defeated and Parliament would have ended the era of dirty coal!
Among the Labour backbenchers who supported the new green measure were Alan Simpson, Jon Cruddas, and Colin Burgon. A few Labour MPs including Dianne Abbott, Fabian Hamilton and Austin Mitchell told climate campaigners they’d vote for the amendment but then either voted against it or abstained. Reacting to the vote, the Executive Director of Greenpeace UK, John Sauven said:
“Yesterday’s vote shows the depth of unease within the Labour party about a bill that hands billions of pounds to energy companies but fails to hold them to account. Ministers caved into lobbyists from big German utilities who claimed that this measure would scare off investment, when the evidence from places like California shows that the opposite is true. Investors want certainty. Without an emissions performance standard new power stations are subject not to a legally binding limit, but to a gentleman’s agreement that leaves an uncertain future for both investors and the UK’s climate targets.”
The bill was for an Emissions Performance Standard to apply to new electricity generation plants.
It meant a restriction on the amount of carbon dioxide that electricity generation plants can emit.
The House divided: Ayes 244, Noes 252.
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