Your article “Treasury blocking green policies key to UK net zero target” (13 August) suggests extreme myopia on the part of Rishi Sunak. This is surprising as he has shown with his coronavirus policies that it is possible to spend large amounts upfront to prevent large-scale future disaster. Climate change, if not addressed, will be a far larger global disaster. It needs a multi-pronged and global approach from central and local governments, the private and public sectors, and individuals. The state of the planet we leave to our children is, after all, a shared responsibility. Central governments must provide the lead, due to the scale and complexity of the challenge.
Spending now will generate new technologies that will open up global business and economic growth opportunities. It will also save huge sums that will otherwise be needed – if we delay – to deal with worse flooding, drought and fires, as well as the physical and mental health consequences.
On one side of the scales: act now, provide upfront investment, limit damage as much as possible. On the other side: act later, much higher cost to limit damage, far more permanent damage done, much higher financial and human costs. It’s a no-brainer.