tv Dateline London BBC News October 24, 2021 2:30am-3:01am BST
a fatal shooting on the set of an alec baldwin movie. the film's director, who was injured in the incident, has spoken about the loss of his friend and colleague, the cinematographer halyna hutchins. italy's former interior minister, matteo salvini, has gone on trial in sicily over his refusal to let a migrant boat dock in august 2019. he denies charges of kidnapping and dereliction of duty. mr salvini had closed italian ports to rescue boats, accusing humanitarian groups of encouraging people smuggling. a prominent advisor to the british government on covid—19 is urging the public to do everything possible to reduce transmission of the virus, as coronavirus infections are continuing to rise. ministers say there's no need for stricter measures in england at the moment. now on bbc news it's time
for dateline london. laughter hello and welcome to the programme which brings together leading uk commentators with the foreign correspondents who write, blog and broadcast from the dateline: london. this week: the british led the world in vaccination; why is it now leading europe — with the highest rate of covid? why in the climate battle, net zero is too high. and 12 angry men and women fear being pole—axed. joining us, maria margaronis, editor—at—large for the us magazine, the nation, is just completing work on a documentary about greece's summer of heat and fire.
henry chu has reported from all over the world for the la times, where he's how part of the editorial team. here in the studio, the british author and columnist yasmin ala—bhai brown. a very warm welcome to all of you. only if pressure on the health service from covid is "unsustainable" will borisjohnson�*s government impose restrictions. we learnt on friday that scientists advising him and other ministers think a spike like the one we saw in january is "increasingly unlikely". however if the rate of infection grows, "earlier intervention would reduce the need for more stringent, disruptive, and longer lasting measures", they say. still, sustainable means different things in different places. in cornwall, the uk's most southwesterly county, the hospital — there is only one — declared a "critical incident". ambulance waits of up to 12 hours. 100 patients seeking treatment in an emergency department with space for fewer than half that number. 44 people hospitalised with covid in a hospital with a0 beds. henry chu we seem to be in a moment of decision with the government. thus far saying it is sticking with plan a, but when you compare
us with other nations, how comfortable should we be at the moment? and should be worried, and if we should be worried how worried? i don't think there is any cause for worry at all, it right now infections with the coronavirus ? here in britain are triple combined that of germany, france, italy and spain. there's no reason for complacency even there there was a very good and speedy vaccine roll—out at the beginning of the year. of course now we're into the fall and a lot of those shots might be waning intent of the immunity we are experiencing. deaths still at about 100 or more a day. when you put that together we are talking about nearly 1,000 a week and if you are saying that about any other disease would be talking about a crisis. and yet some people, including the government, seem to have now
concluded that this an acceptable level and that we just need to learn to live with the coronavirus which is true. in a scientific sense. but there are certainly ways to minimise its impact, and right now the government which prides itself on saying that it goes with the science, follows the science, while so many scientists are saying that we do need some kind of new measures or imposition of some fairly easy low impact measures that can help mitigate what's happening. and keep the infection from spreading. i think right now the government seems to be putting all its eggs in a vaccination basket. and the vaccines definitely are miracle of science or some people might even say from god. but when a miracle throws you a lifeboat it's on you to keep it inflated. i'm not sure the government is doing that at the moment. we have prided ourselves in the uk on the success of the vaccination programme, and on its reach. though it is a bit of a plateau now because a certain portion of the population seem to not want to get vaccinated. the booster programme which is the third jab to put it simply, it has been left that that is not going quite so well.
what is the problem? i have just been offered my booster, which i am thrilled about. i think the role that was run mostly by the nhs and gp surgeries, and i don't know quite what has happened there. i'm being called by my gp and was from my previous jabs. there's a sort of falling off of take—up i think. i think people have become complacent and there's a weird kind of split in the country which is the same as or more related to a split we had a long time ago over many issues. there is, on the one hand a sort of loss of trust in the government which has changed intact many times during this pandemic. we had the prime minister saying let the bodies piled up which has itself been very complacent and at odds with itself about how to proceed.
and on the other side there's this kind of cavalier defiance like i'm ok, it's not going to be a problem. so if you take the tube in london these days fewer than half the people on the tube are wearing a face covering. even though when you walk down into the station there's an announcement saying you must wear a face covering on all london transit. this feeling of british people completely ignoring the rules is quite odd and new to me. you've experienced something that is a contrast in the enforcement of the rules in this country and the enforcement of the rules in france? we got back from paris- and the french countryside, we use the metro all- the and not once and not one restaurant, not one metro train. did we see an unmasked person. imagine that! and there was one moment when somebody was taking | their mask off and we heard i some security guy or whoever it was saying, 135 euros
fine if you do that. - and there seems to be a total understanding that this - is about society and how we owe each other and ourselves, - and ijust thought i arrived . in a much more civilised place where people are taking care| of each other a little bit more and here i don't necessarily blame the public. _ i think there are some people who are completely immune. to information, - warnings and so on. but the mixed messaging, and i'm trying very hard i because we have been - instructed to so many times, to try and understand why - the government is doing this. you are displaying empathy. and with maria said this kind of not knowing which way . to really come down on, - they are caught between social responsibility which is their job, and the capitalism - to which they are permitted, which means business- and profits and nothing...
they are caught between them the health secretary said - earlier in the week it would be a good thing if conservative i mps wore masks because that would send a signal reminderl to people that this is still a pandemic| and whether you think masksl or some magic solution or not it sort of symbolic. and if the house of commons saying actually we don't need to wear masks because we all know each other and we are kind of friends. jacob rees—mogg, if they don't do it how— jacob rees—mogg, if they don't do it how other— jacob rees—mogg, if they don't do it how other public - jacob rees—mogg, if they don'tl do it how other public supposed to follow? — my grandson, who is ten, went on a school trip. - the kids, all seven, 11 or 12 - of them and the teachers came
back with covid. because they're in a city - where nobody was taking care. i don't think we should bej allowing our citizens to be opened up to such risk. there is a difficulty here. 0n the one hand, these measures are the so—called plan b which would be facemasks, mandated and social distance. people working from home etc. there would be doing that in scotland and yes the figures are coming down, doing that in wales as well and the figures going up. this is not a magic solution. i had a look at the figures are wales and scotland and i don't think it is that clear. figures in wales going up for some time. there is no magic solution but there are sensible things that we can do. it is not so difficult to wear a mask unless you are someone who really can't in which case you are exempt. and i have a feeling that people have so much lost faith that even if mask wearing
was mandated, unless there were on the spot fines like the one yasmin is referring to in france, you look at people in crowded places in london and say, there's this funny feeling of, i am wearing a mask, why are you not but you don't want to say anything because that feels awkward and like you are being bossy, and there are more people not wearing masks then wearing masks. so it's become so confusing that actually think we have sort of lost the plot. i also think this government as i mentioned before it has been such a big deal of the vaccines come i don't want to underplay them, they are important and how we combat this virus but they are not the be—all and is plan b that we are talking about which you referred to and enumerated the elements resolve, this is not some draconian oppressive system that they want to inaugurate. itjust saying that masks might be mandated, but they encourage you to work from home, encourages social distancing. it's not really putting in place anything very onerous. it's all very low impact and what the government refrained from doing that is kind of a mystery to me.
imposing restrictions next week will not look good to register for more than 100 heads of government arrive for copper 26, the 26th conference of the parties on climate change. australia's prime minister and india's will be in glasgow even after leaked documents show that governments arguing against an end to cole. they want to become a net zero by 2050, why is net zero not low enough, maria? to start by saying what net zero means, it's important to understand it. net zero means that any greenhouse gases that we continue to emit are offset equally by greenhouse gas sinks like boris or technological means. that means the whole planet in a global way has to reach net zero by 2050.
in order to at least slow climate change, the climate crisis down. that is a huge ask, right? but it is crucial. and it also, in terms of the uk and our own governments net zero project, which britain is the first i think highly developed country to actually enshrine a net zero target in law, that is we have to reach net zero by 2050, quite a lot of criticism of this plan. 0ne mainly saying it does not go far enough, it's a great thing so that goes in the table first of all. there is, the main criticism is that it does not include a sense that we actually are going to have to change the way notjust until 2050, but permanently. we can no longer rely on so much energy, we have to consume less. that's not in the plan at all.
what is in the plan is changing over from gas to heat pumps for heating houses. domestic heating accounts for about a third of greenhouse gas emissions in the uk. that's a good thing and there's been a criticism that does not go far enough and there's not enough of the subsidy. and is not organised enough. there's also question about are we talking about a real net zero that is where our imports also are net zero, and for example we are notjust producing less building materials here and importing them from elsewhere. we are effectively increasing the amount of carbon elsewhere in the world. so this has to be, so they not very good at all, a global cooperation. henry, what you reported on the summer, what if you come
to the conclusion for and the work you have been doing what happened in greece and southern europe? what became clear to me reporting on the fires is that already the climate crisis is hitting very hard all over the world come in local places and that the response, the reaction is local. when you talk to people in this place is they don't say is the climate crisis commits climate change they go, the government let us down. there weren't enough things. the fire to promote wasn't competent. there's this local response which comes way before an understanding of the global situation. and so we have to, it's that old slogan, think globally, act locally. henry, i was just really interested in the point she's making because this is a problem presumably forjoe biden.
he's going to come to glasgow, he is doubtless going to sign up to whatever he is agreed, i'm not presuming anything but i think he is on the side of those who want to deal next week. but then he is going to go back to people who remain sceptical about climate change even as they watched parts of their world kind of evaporate around them in flame. in fact, california, my home state, went through a very brutal summer where we had another year of a single fire burning nearlyi million acres. that'sjust phenomenal, the amount of damage and destruction that has wrought. then you had fires in 0regan and edging into canada as wen— that were so large they created their own weather systems. some of which perhaps spawned other fires through lightning strikes. it's an incredible problem now hitting the us and affecting millions upon millions of people. the biden administration actually has talked a good talk
about climate change, he has often been saying what an important priority it is for notjust the us but the world to tackle. no doubt as you say in glasgow he will continue to talk the good talk. it is at home where you have lawmakers holding up that agenda where it's really going to come down to the crunch. in fact its a democratic senator, i mean the republicans are uniformly against it almost, but it's a democratic senator who has himself gotten rich from coal is holding up the idea of converting more and more to clean energy. so that's really going to be a problem. when it comes to the public support it does deserve to be said that in the us there have been denialists over climate change. right now a new poll this month shows that 75% of people in the us actually do agree that global warming is a problem. only 12% deny it. it shows that the lawmakers
themselves have not caught up with public opinion. and the 12% are quite noisy. yasmin, henry was making the point about coal and the political influence of coal. we see in these leaked reports in countries like india they are saying hang on a minute, don't talk about moving away from coal quite so fast but to be fair to a country of india's size, it could not eliminate coal on the scale that would be quite comfortable for us. we are talking about nations that are deeply unequal - in terms of global influence i and, china could and does do more because it is notj a democracy basically. this is the sad news. i was at the rio summit all those years ago. - all those years ago. the earth summit as it was called. one of the most interesting. moments was an activist stood up and said here we are at this grand place in rio talking -
like we are, and they are, it's genocide of trees in brazil. i and nobody is stopping it. and that has not changed. the genocide of trees — i there's a very interesting paper i read today which saidl we cannot plant enough trees to offset the tiny amount that we think we can, - and my other big anxiety is this big talk is all - about future technology. it's all going be solved - by entrepreneurs and these solutions will fall upon us. stop and think. we are really, - really now drifting towards the end of the planet and one hopes he is right, - but he's not entirely... realistic. _ will talk more about this next week as the summit begins next weekend. did brussels witness a changing of the guard this week? angela merkel may have attended her final meeting of europe's council of ministers. her 16 years in the german
chancellery is ending with an all—mighty european bust—up after poland's most seniorjudges decided that the country's constitution trumps european union law, breaking the most basic building block of the eu. a dozen countries lined up to oppose poland's defiance. ridiculous! said one eu leader. step forward viktor 0rban. the prime minister of hungary, now europe's elder statesman, declared "the polish are right". yasmin, poland's constitution is not the first to say we are not happy about eu law, the german court said it about the ecb and the european court ofjustice saying... these are 27 nations. trying to make it. work is never easy. but, you know, i do not give up on good liberal values. - look at ireland. for the longest time, - the irish law was actually a direct kind of-
repudiation of what all the other eu countries, - most of them, not all of them, look what happened next. the liberal people pushed the liberal law that was i absolutely needed, and... isn't the point that... that's exactly the point, that came from the nation state, not from brussels saying no this is not european. the ecj is a very important institution which is why- it is resented. because people don't - like itsjudgements and often they are based on things that are above nations . and all of that. one of the things that. needs to be remembered is that there is a younger population in poland. - we have met some polish people in france who live in france - although earning less - because the polish economy is extraordinarily- successful at the moment. we asked them why, - and they said because here
we have rights. and we like having rights. so you see, the young will change things. - so don't be too pessimistic. maria, michel barnier, which led people in brussels would say is a good european, they say that france must quote its legal sovereignty unless all could be subject to thejudgements of the european court ofjustice. is there now a growing consensus that actually the european authority has gone a bit too far, even in member countries that are at the heart of europe? jasmine is right that making it possible for 27 different nation states to work together is an absolutely utopian project, but i think what we are seeing now is the tension between those two ideas of europe.
europe's as a capitalist club, or social europe. the french issue and polish issue and hungarian issue are extremely important because they are a challenge directly to the idea of social europe. the polish government and hungarian government want to be able to run authoritarian governments victor 0rban has said he is leading an illiberal democracy, in poland women have tried to work very hard to regain the right to abortion and most polish people want to stay the eu. so the union has a very difficult challenge ahead which is how to keep poland in while protecting the rights of people in poland who looked to the european union exactly for that. speak why henry. when we say social europe we are citing some social policies for example on abortion where the treatment of lgbt people but let's remember when it comes to poland specifically we are also talking about a pillar of democracy, not just social policy and that is the judiciary,
which in poland has now become subordinate to the ruling party, to the law and justice party of the prime minister. what we are talking about now is not just social policies, but rather the very essence of democracy itself, and that's where the eu has come down on this. it was quite interesting hearing victor 0rban, because he posed the argument on the basis saying, look, it's very reasonable where we have transferred powers of course european law is supreme but where we have not the national law should stay supreme. what is the problem? what you're saying is problem is that the government chose the judges and then told the judges know we want a judgement that will effectively say we make the decisions not europe. i suppose that's where brussels is starting to get so alarmed. there have been other laws in other countries that are not necessarily constant with eu views or the eu constitution
and there are ways to work that out. as you say what's happening now if you say what's happening now is to have an illiberal government ordering the judiciary to fall in line with its views. that's very different from the democratic states that helped found the eu. the tension between whose laws reigned supreme, is that the nation or is it the supranational institution of the ecj? that has been a fundamental tension within this block almost from its founding time. over the last 60 years there's been an informal agreement that indeed ecj rulings reigned supreme. that they take primacy over national law. this was long before poland ever had eu membership as a twinkle in their own eye. this is what it signed up to even though it had other exemptions and these are the rules that it knew were in play. the eu also stumbled on its own when it went about it maybe 13, 14 years ago. they had a chance in the lisbon treaty to write that in explicitly. that eu law took precedence over national law. and they baulked.
so they're now unfortunately reaping some of the quandary... thank you all very much. we will be back next week looking ahead to what is coming on the cop26 summit on climate change. more of this on the programmes. goodbye. hello there. saturday was a pretty cloudy day across the board. temperatures were edging up and part two of the weekend it looks a little bit milder. we will also have some chain around which will make it feel mild too. but there will be some showery bursts of rain all courtesy of this weather front which is bringing a very wet night to parts of northern ireland
and western scotland. sunday morning this weather front will be slowly weakening as it continues to journey its way eastwards across the rest of scotland and for england and wales. lying across western england and will across the morning you'll notice it will become more fragmented with showery bursts of rain edging their way across the rest of england and wales through the day. not reaching the southeast until evening time so staying dry here with some glimmers of brightness. elsewhere sunshine show was heavily rumbling thunder in ireland and western scotland. it's going to be another blustery day right across the board. windiest for southern and western coast could see up to maybe 40mph in exposure. it's going to be milder probably milder than saturday with top temperatures in the brighter spots reaching around 16 celsius. through sunday night it stays blustery. there'll be clear spells and showers, most of the showers will be affecting more northern and western areas, the odd heavy one again in eastern areas which will tend to stay dry with just a few showers getting through there. another mild night to come for england and wales with a perhaps something a little bit fresher for northern ireland and scotland. here's the pressure chart then for monday, low pressure to the north of the uk, westerly winds cover these weather fronts accentuated showers with sunny spells for tuesday at more significant area of low pressure affects
the north of the uk further south, closer to an area of high pressure it should be drier and a little bit brighter. this is the picture for monday, a lot of sunshine around, many places to stay dry altogether but we will have showers around. most of the southern and western areas, some of them on the heavy side. another mild day to come across england and wales, the mid—teens again, something a bit cooler and fresher for scotland and northern ireland here. around ten to 12 degrees. as we move through the week, it stays mild very milder across southern areas but southern areas will tend to see the driest and the brightest of the weather. further north always windier and wetter at times.
welcome to bbc news. i'm rich preston. our top stories: the film director injured in a fatal shooting on the set of an alec baldwin movie speaks about the death of his colleague, as the police investigation continues. italy's former interior minister, matteo salvini, goes on trial, charged with kidnapping after refusing to allow a migrant rescue boat to dock. covid infections in the uk rise, as a prominent government advisor says he's fearful of another "lockdown christmas." riot police block the path of a new caravan of migrants hoping to get to mexico city and then on to the united states. and the environmental activist greta thunberg talks to the bbc about where she thinks world leaders are failing on tackling climate change.