Cameron shows True Colours on Climate
The FT broke the story, but Damian Carrington at the Guardian has put it in clearest context. The blocking of the appointment of David Kennedy as the new permanent secretary to DECC is an extraordinary intervention by a Prime Minister. It shows a leader so desperate to undermine the progressive moves by DECC to support green growth that he will resort to naked exercise of his prerogative to veto a transparent recruitment process.
DECC is a department developing legislation with a long term impact for the UK economy in terms of jobs, trade and cost of living. Energy and climate policy will shape our international negotiations and European relations. The search for a leader of the department would have been costly and extensive. Therefore it is nothing short of a scandal that an experienced and popular choice has been rejected by David Cameron on purely political grounds. Perhaps naively, Cameron is trying to score points in the coalition by showing a shocking contempt for the tax-payer.
The result of Cameron’s hubristic move will be another wasteful recruitment process, another period of listlessness in a key department and confusion for investors expecting certainty and commitment from the UK government following the publication of the Energy Bill.
This ‘hit’ by Cameron should be condemned by those that want our energy and climate policies to be guided by science and reason. It should also be decried by all those that want our taxes to be spent on finding and retaining talented civil servants who are knowledgeable and effective, rather than playing political football.