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By Vice Chair Political, Steve Mason

Report for the 2018 Annual General Meeting.

It's been a busy few months and my Green Lib Dems role as Vice Chair Political

My role in GLD is interlinked with my fracking role as I find the fracking role opens the door to many contacts useful to GLD and visa-versa.

  1. Graham Neale and I have attended a various meeting at Westminster such as LD Defra cluster meetings and an initial meetings on health impacts of fracking with Norman Lamb MP leading a joint letter to the health select committee.
  2. The Lib Dems released, in parliament, the report of the 'earthquakes in fracking areas' by Prof. Peter Styles.

    Comment from Lynne in press

  3. I have had numerous parliamentary questions tabled by Wera, Layla, Lynne and Tim Farron.
  4. I have managed to pull these quotes from Ed Davey on fracking into the press.

    Liberal Democrats Press Office

    Responding to Kevin Hollinrake MP's pro-fracking piece in the Yorkshire Post today, Liberal Democrat MP and former Secretary of State for Energy, Ed Davey said: "The reality of fracking is it has proved more expensive than originally expected. And with gas prices lower than expected too, the economic case for fracking has been seriously undermined. With renewable power like wind and solar now much cheaper than expected thanks to successful Liberal Democrat policies, the alternatives to gas are arriving faster, undermining the original need to find replacement gas supplies for reducing North Sea production in the first place. When facts change, Ministers should change policy, yet Conservatives seem unwilling to do that."

  5. Followed by his response to the approval of the Lancashire fracking application in July.

    Fracking decision fails local democracy

    Former Liberal Democrat Energy Secretary Ed Davey has accused the Government of failing "a key task of a democratic free society" by giving Cuadrilla the green light to start fracking at a well in Lancashire.

    This is the first time the Government have issued a fracking permit since the new regulatory regime was introduced. Lancashire County Council rejected an application from Cuadrilla to start fracking on the site in 2016.

    Ed Davey said:

    "I'm not surprised the Conservatives have overridden local democracy - they were desperate to do that during the Coalition, but Liberal Democrats stopped them."

    "If the Government and the companies can't persuade local people - including with significant payments to the local communities so they have a real share in any upside - then they have failed in a key task of a democratic free society."

  6. I was invited to speak by Ecotricity to speak at Womad festival onstage alongside Jonathan Bartley and Simon Pickering of Ecotricity all chaired by John Snow.
  7. I have helped book speakers for both the GLD conference and main conference.
  8. Currently Graham and myself are in conversation with Ed Molyneux at HQ on the issue of Permitted development and NSIP plans for oil and gas exploration. I hope to tag the Lib Dems to the campaign to raise awareness on environmental protest vs corporate interests.
  9. I am in conversation to with Duncan Brack to bring international trade and energy expert Jason Hunter to the climate action group
  10. I am currently coordinating NGOs like FOE, CPRE, 38 degrees, 350.org etc on the Letcommunitiesdecide.org campaign and at time of writing this (1st September 2018) I am trying to get this emergency motion through to conference. If you are reading this could you add your name to the supporters list by adding comment in the table section; https://docs.google.com/document/d/1O_tiEyVj3oJYJoYJN0zWO08q3WR31cji7WBBF3hc-8Q/edit?usp=sharing
  11. I am currently building relationships with #breakfreefromplastics in Europe and foodandwaterwatcheurope.org
  12. I helped link the Lib Dems to the recent cannabis campaign by liasing with the Press agent to get comment from

    Hi Steve,

    I am really sorry this took so long, I finally got a comment from Christine Jardine who has a constituent with severe epilepsy who needs medicinal cannabis:

    "I feel strongly that the time has come to legalise medicinal cannabis and decriminalise its re relational use."

    "Cannabinoids have striking medicinal benefits for those suffering from a range of medical conditions, such as epilepsy and chronic pain. Moving cases such as Alfie Dingley and Billy Caldwell clearly illustrate this."

    "It is a disgrace that children are being denied a drug that would significantly increase their quality of life."

    "We need to dispense of our prejudice towards cannabis and acknowledge its astounding, life-changing benefits"

    If you would like some more Lib Dems involved let me know and I can try to get some to the event.

    Toni

There are many other conversations that have been had and are currently being had with HQ which all help raise the profile of GLD which helps our mission to have the Main Party take green issues seriously.