Steerpike Steerpike

Net zero minister forced to fly back for crunch vote

(Photo by Sean Gallup/Getty Images)

It’s been a rather difficult week for Rishi Sunak, and it’s still only Tuesday. After being grilled by the Covid Inquiry yesterday, today Sunak is having to fend off a right-wing rebellion on his Rwanda plan. And now the government’s net zero minister Graham Stuart has been forced to fly back from Dubai’s COP28 for tonight’s vote before, er, flying back again afterwards. So much for those environmental commitments…

Stuart’s departure means that the UK now has no ministerial representation at the international conference as final talks commence. And Labour’s Shadow Home Secretary Yvette Cooper has cottoned on to this somewhat sub-optimal set of events. She mocked the hasty return of the climate minister. ‘Well, I guess they can say at least one flight has taken off as a result of this legislation.’

Ba doom tish. You can watch the clip here:

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Steerpike is The Spectator's gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from Westminster and beyond. Email tips to or message @MrSteerpike

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