Manchester City Council has become the latest local authority to formally declare a ‘Climate Emergency’, placing it among a coalition of more than 100 others across the UK and Ireland. The declaration was made at the Council’s full meeting on Thursday evening (11 July), following pressure from residents, local businesses and green campaign groups in the wake of the central Government’s ‘Climate Emergency’ declaration in May. Manchester City Council’s document states that climate change and global heating are posing “serious risks to Manchester’s people” in the forms of “economic, social and environmental well-being and supply chains – including food security, financial systems and local weather, among many others”. The document emphasises the work undertaken by the Council since its 2008 framework, ‘Principles of Tackling Climate Change in Manchester’, was introduced with an overarching aim of engaging people from all walks of life in climate discussions. Indeed, the framework paved the way for Manchester to set a 2038 net-zero target late last year. However, following an amendment made at last night’s meeting, the declaration states that the Council will now assess the practicality of moving its target forward to 2030.
Edie 12th July 2019 read more »
NFLA welcomes Manchester’s ‘climate emergency’ declaration as part of the moves in local government to commit to rapid carbon reductions – now it needs central government to do likewise and commit more resource. NFLA note that in a Parliamentary answer provided to Caroline Lucas MP, the UK Government reported that over a third of their staff in the BEIS (Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy) Department working on energy matters are focused entirely on nuclear policy. This compares with under 20% of staff dedicated to delivering renewable energy solutions. With strong suggestions billions of pounds of taxpayer money will be offered to the nuclear sector in a new financial model to fund new nuclear reactors, there has to be deep questions over the direction of UK energy policy to deliver on urgent ‘zero carbon’ commitments. Available finance should be offered to support the type of innovative renewable energy, heating and transport solutions being advocated across local government; and it should be prioritised now.
NFLA 12th July 2019 read more »
EDEN District Council has declared a climate emergency with the bold aim of making the authority carbon neutral by 2030. A vote last night committing the council to assessing the ecological impacts of all its decisions and actions was passed with 22 councillors voting in favour, seven against and six abstaining. The motion was proposed by council leader Virginia Taylor who outlined how it committed the authority to developing a strategic plan by the end of the year which would set out how it would achieve zero carbon emissions by 2030, across all the council’s activities.
Cumberland & Westmorland Herald 12th July 2019 read more »
Letter Cllr Kevin Frea, Co-chair, UK Climate Emergency Network: The government may be responding to the climate crisis like a “Dad’s Army” but more than 120 local authorities led by all of the main political parties have declared that this really is a climate emergency and that they will go into battle with or without government support. Between us we have multibillion-pound budgets, cross party determination, increasing public support and some legislative powers. We are already building up some impressive examples of what can be done and are pooling our experience and expertise. But we can’t win the campaign our own: we need the government to send reinforcements, bringing legislation and resources to support renewable energy, zero-carbon building, public transport, carbon sequestration, action on biodiversity and much more.
Guardian 12th July 2019 read more »
A group of wealthy US philanthropists and investors have donated almost half a million pounds to support the grassroots movement Extinction Rebellion and school strike groups – with the promise of tens of millions more in the months ahead. Trevor Neilson, an investor and philanthropist who has worked with some of the world’s richest families, has teamed up with Rory Kennedy – daughter of Robert Kennedy – and Aileen Getty, whose family wealth comes from the oil industry, to launch the Climate Emergency Fund. Neilson, who has worked with figures such as Bill Gates and Richard Branson, said the fund was inspired by Swedish teenager Greta Thunberg and the Extinction Rebellion protesters in the UK in April.
Guardian 12th July 2019 read more »
Independent 12th July 2019 read more »
CLIMATE change remains a hugely emotive topic around the world, with awareness and activism both surging in recent months. But while many might be aware of the Paris Agreement to limit global average temperatures and the UK’s recent pledge to be carbon neutral by 2050, it remains to be seen how far these goals are understood in practical terms. We have looked to see what this net zero emissions target means for the average person in the UK, who directly emits 10 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year. Broken down, approximately 5.7 tonnes of this is from transport, 2.7 tonnes from heating with natural gas and a further 1.6 tonnes from the electricity used in the home. If people are so minded, there are a few simple steps to reduce these figures almost immediately. Taking electricity first, moving to a 100 per cent renewable provider (of which there are a growing number in the UK) can be done instantaneously and, for the most part, for the same price as existing tariffs. This ensures all the electricity people need is supplied to the grid via renewable sources and moving to such a provider reduces the annual emission by 1.4 tonnes.
Herald 13th July 2019 read more »