How is the Conservative Party grappling with net zero?

When it comes to tackling climate change, the Conservative government has made it clear that it is seeking to lead the world, having passed a legally binding commitment to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.

But at the party’s conference this week in Manchester, delegates from the Tory grassroots, thinktanks and lobby groups of various persuasions clashed over exactly how the UK should move from targets to action. And a small but vocal minority questioned whether net zero was either feasible or desirable. 

It comes as party strategists are trying to find ways to stem the exodus of younger voters from the party, with speakers in several fringe sessions making the case that strong climate ambition will resonate with ‘generation Greta’.

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