Boris Johnson 'Admitted He Doesn't Understand Climate Change'

Sacked climate change summit president tells voters to be wary of the PM's promises.

Boris Johnson once admitted he does not “really understand” climate change, the former president of the upcoming UN climate summit in Glasgow has claimed.

Claire O’Neill, a former Tory minister, was sacked from her job on Friday of running the COP26 summit due to be held in November.

She is expected to be replaced with a serving minister at the imminent cabinet reshuffle.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4′s Today programme on Tuesday morning, O’Neill hit out at Johnson and said anyone given a promise by him should “make sure the money is in the bank” before agreeing.

“The prime minister has made incredibly warm statements about this over the years,” she said of his approach to tackling climate change.

“He has also admitted to me that he doesn’t really understand it. He doesn’t really get it, I think is what he said.”

Johnson told school children at the Science Museum this morning he wanted people to focus on reducing “carbon dioxide emissions, which, as I understand it, is swaddling the planet like a tea cosy,” he said.

Asked if Johnson understood climate change, the prime minister’s official spokesman said: “You can see his speech today.

“He has positioned the UK as a world leader on tackling climate change with the most ambitious environmental programme of any country on earth.”


The prime minister has today outlined new measures, including a ban on sales of new petrol and diesel vehicles being brought forward to 2035.

But O’Neill slammed the government’s progress. “We have seen a huge lack of leadership and engagement,” she said.

“Our efforts right now are somewhere around the middle of League One. We are playing at Oxford United levels when we need to be Liverpool if we are going to do what the world actually needs us to do.”

Of Johnson, she added: “My advice to anybody to whom Boris is making promises – whether it is voters, world leaders, ministers, employees or indeed to family members – is to get it in writing, get a lawyer to look at it and make sure the money is in the bank.”


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