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de Brún to speak at tomorrow's 'Progressive London' event

23 January, 2009 - by Martina Anderson MEP

Sinn Féin MEP Bairbre de Brún will travel to London tomorrow to speak as part of a major conference in London, Progressive London, the initiative of former London Mayor Ken Livingstone.


Ms de Brun will address a session, Green Cities, alongside leading environmentalists Charles Secrett and Tony Juniper, Green Party London Assembly Member Darren Johnson and former London deputy Mayor and Labour Assembly Member Nicky Gavron. Other speakers at the conference include Ken Livingstone, a number of MPs, trade union leaders and leading figures in the arts, campaigns, legal and human rights fields and international guests.


As a member of the European Parliament Environment Committee and the Temporary Committee on Climate Change, the Sinn Fein MEP has played a leading role in pressing for urgent action on the threat of Climate change, including developing policy at a European level and more widely, such as at the recent UN Climate Change Conference in Pozna.


Ms De Brun said `We stand at an important crossroads in setting out the way forward in how we respond to the threat of Climate Change. The election of Barrack Obama in the US has also given rise to a new optimism that we will see a new decisiveness.'


Ms de Brún also underlined the need for local action and how cities can play a vital role in leading this: `The London conference can be an important discussion on our how our strategy should spell out how each sector of the economy and society can contribute to reducing emissions.'


She also praised the leading role Ken Livingstone has played in tackling climate change, and in developing the Progressive London initative:

`At a time when we face global challenges of enormous proportions, it is particularly important that progressive people come together to put forward a positive alternative. The issue of climate change and developing green cities could not be a stronger example of this.'


The conference will also host an emergency discussion on Palestine. Ms de Brun said, `Progressive people around the world mobilised in solidarity with the people of Palestine and to demand peace and an end the Israeli onslaught over recent weeks. The growing demands for a just settlement, based on self-determination, peace and inclusive dialogue show that there is strong support internationally for a better way forward, and one which constitutes the majority.'


`I welcome this event, and am pleased to participate to show that a better world is both possible and necessary'.


* Progressive London conference takes place on Saturday 24 February, 10am (registration 9am), TUC Congress House, Great Russell St, London WC2. Full details:

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