Molly, who is Green Party speaker on Brexit, has challenged Liam Fox over whether his aim for new trade deals with countries outside and beyond the EU is consistent with the UK’s climate commitments. The challenge comes as the International Trade secretary makes his “Road to Brexit” speech today. She said:

“Liam Fox has visited almost 40 countries and clocked up 290,000 miles in his attempts to stitch up free trade deals after Brexit. This is an indication of the huge potential increase in carbon emissions that would result from trying to swap trading with our European neighbours with trade deals with distant places. We know the government have an aversion to Brexit impact studies, but I wonder if any analysis on whether such trade deals can ever be consistent with our commitments to the Paris climate targets have been carried out?”

Last year, Molly commissioned a report into options for trade post-Brexit, which provided a strong critique of globalisation and concluded that only a radical shift in economic policy which reduces dependency on exports and makes the UK more self-sufficient would offer the chance of a successful Brexit [2]. Molly concluded:

“I desperately want the UK to remain a member of the EU, or at very least part of the single market and customs union. But if we do end up leaving the EU, only greater self-reliance and stronger local economies will prevent a race to the bottom on environmental standards and workers’ rights while also meeting our commitments to reducing carbon emissions in line with the Paris agreement.”