In what is being hailed as "the most definitive statement yet" on the Dorset authorities' response to climate change, Environment spokesperson Edward Millipede told delegates at the CopOut2028 summit that "we will be doing everything in our powers, pulling every lever and straining at every leash to endeavour to formulate a set of workable and enduring proposals that will meet our manifesto obligations whilst protecting those most vulnerable to the impact of green initiatives and at the same time we will be monitoring closely both the science and the opinion polls, fact-checking reports and listening to focus groups in an effort to construct a coherent, long-term, fiscally-responsible yet environment-centred statement of intent designed for implementation at the optimal time". Asked when such a statement could be expected, Mr Millipede said "In the future and when we are absolutely ready to proceed".
The statement comes amid accusations that the authorities have resiled from their previous commitment "to do something at some stage" and the assembled permanent secretaries were keen to put a positive spin on any perceived change in policy. "There is absolutely no change either in policy or in the direction of travel", one unnamed apparatchik insisted, "not least since there has been no policy and no obvious direction of travel. To suggest otherwise would be ludicrous". Pressed as to whether NetZero remained a target, the same official looked deeply puzzled before suggesting that NetZero had been achieved a long time ago with no member of the Dorset fishing community registering a catch in the last two years. "Nets have been empty for some time and are expected to remain so", he confirmed.
Delegates to this year's summit are being housed at the exclusive environmentally-sustainable Greater Thongbird Mountain Retreat, Duntish and are said to be living more frugally than ever before in an attempt to persuade the public that they are in earnest when they insist we must all be more environmentally aware. Organisers say the use of only responsibly sourced ingredients, organic champagne, carbon-neutral duvets, non-chemical toilets and recyclable speeches means that [excluding the impact of the delegates themselves*] the summit will generate zero ideas, no initiatives and little chance of progress - something described by chair Mrs Amanda J Threadbone as a "win, win, win for the business climate".
*Hot air from speeches is thought to be likely to generate MtCO2e 2,200,000 tons - the equivalent of 40 coal-fired power stations, 44 million petrol vehicles or a city the size of Beijing]