- Countryside in Crisis?
- The Energy Water Food Stress Nexus
- Unsustainable Fishing
- Keeping pace with a digital revolution
- Global health in the 21st Century
- Adapting to an urban future
- Educating for tomorrow
- Digital technology in Africa
- Persistent poverty in Britain
- Can the UK ever be sustainable?
- Plastic pollution in the oceans
- Natural disasters: how to improve?
- Not In My Back Yard
- Digital Divide in the UK?
- Importing goods, exporting drought?
- Britain’s ageing population
- Engineering our climate
- The future shape of Capitalism
- Migration: skills and the job market
- Razing the Rainforest
- London under water
- Concreting the countryside
- Future of low carbon energy
- Africa in the 21st Century
Rt Hon Hilary Benn MP - the role of politics
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RT HON HILARY BENN MP
"We are now coming face to face with the consequences of our extraordinary ability to interact with the Earth; to make things, to create things, to build things, to change things"
Hilary is the Shadow Leader of the House of Commons, formerly holding the position of Shadow Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.
A former President of Ealing Acton Constituency Labour Party, Hilary was elected to Ealing Borough Council in 1979, becoming the youngest ever Chair of the Education Committee. He also served as Deputy Leader of the Council. He contested Ealing North in the 1983 and 1987 General Elections.
Hilary worked for MSF as Head of Policy and Communications and represented the union on the Labour Party's National Policy Forum. He was also Chair of the Management Committee of Unions 21 - the trade union think tank.
Following Labour's 1997 General Election victory, Hilary was appointed as special adviser to the Rt Hon David Blunkett MP, Secretary of State for Education and Employment. He developed the Union Learning Fund and was closely involved in the drafting of the Learning Age green paper.
In 1999, he was elected as Member of Parliament for Leeds Central.
After serving as a minister at the Department for International Development and the Home Office, he was appointed to the Cabinet as the Secretary of State for International Development in 2003. He was the Prime Minister’s Africa Personal Representative and was responsible for the establishment of the UN Central Emergency Relief Fund.
In 2007 he stood for the Deputy Leadership of the Labour Party.
From 2007 until the 2010 General Election, he was Secretary of State for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs. He played a leading role in putting the Climate Change Act and the Marine and Coastal Access Act on the statute book, and he established the South Downs National Park.
Hilary Benn was voted by his fellow MPs as Minister of the Year in the 2006 and 2007 House Magazine Awards. He also won the Channel 4 Politicians’ Politician Award in 2006.