‘Green Tories’ complete ministerial line-up at revamped Business and Energy Department

July 18, 2016

Nick Hurd, Margot James and Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe will join new BEIS ministry headed by Greg Clark .

Hopes the newly formed Department of Business, Energy, and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) will prioritise action to tackle climate change and expand the green economy were given a boost over the weekend, as a number of leading ‘green Tories’ were appointed to key positions within Theresa May’s government.

Conservative MPs Nick Hurd and Margot James and House of Lords peer Baroness Lucy Neville-Rolfe were confirmed as junior ministers at the newly created department over the weekend, where they will join new Business Secretary Greg Clark.

Like Clark, who served as shadow energy and climate change secretary prior to 2010 and has been a long-standing advocate of climate action, the new ministers bring a variety environmental, climate change and green business experience to the new department.

Nick Hurd, the MP for Ruislip Northwood and Pinner, is a supporter of the Conservative Environment Network think tank, and was chairman of the climate change sub-group of the Quality of Life policy review commission between 2006 and 2008. He has also served on the Environmental Audit committee and more recently served as parliamentary under-secretary of state for international development between November 2015 and July 2016, and as civil society minister for four years during the coalition government.

Baroness Neville-Rolfe, meanwhile, was promoted on Sunday from her previous role as parliamentary under-secretary for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS), to minister of the revamped business and energy department. Neville-Rolfe was appointed as a life peer of the House of Lords in 2013 after around 16 years working for Tesco, where she served on the board as executive director of corporate and legal affairs for seven years. She also formerly worked as a civil servant at the ministry for agriculture, fisheries and food for 19 years.

Margot James has in turn taken up the under-secretary of state role at the newly formed department. James was first elected as an MP for Stourbridge in 2010, and has previously sat on the BIS select committee and the Committee on Arms Export Controls.

She also created and chaired an all-party parliamentary group for trade and investment in a bid to boost dialogue on trade issues between businesses, trade organisations and politicians, and since 2015 served as assistant government whip, with responsibility for education and equalities. In addition, she previously worked to promote the Green Deal energy efficiency scheme and campaigned to reform the climate change levy.

Source: Business Green