Councillors declare climate emergency and commit to taking action to tackle global warming

Published: Tue 14th November, 2023

  • Councillors at Full Council on Monday November 6 where they agreed to declare a climate emergency.

A climate emergency has been declared by Charnwood Borough Council.

The motion was unanimously passed at a council meeting on Monday, November 6 and it commits the Council to working with partners and communities to reduce carbon emissions and help limit global warming.

The motion was proposed by Cllr Louise Jones, the Council’s lead member for climate action, net zero, property and assets.

Cllr Jones thanked councillors for supporting the motion and said: “The Council delivers impactful services for our local communities but sometimes we need to consider our role in tackling bigger issues. Climate change is one of those issues.

“The declaration of a climate emergency commits the Council to doing all it can to reduce not only emissions related to its operations, but also working with partners, local communities, and businesses to encourage them to limit their impact on the environment as well.

“In Iceland there’s a monument on the site of a glacier lost to man-made climate change which acknowledges that we know there’s a problem, and we know what needs to be done, but only future generations will know if we did it. Well, we know what needs to be done.

"Time is running out, and we all need to act now.”

Cllr Geoff Lawrence, Green Party, seconded the motion. He said: “Declaring a climate emergency provides a much-needed impetus for the Council to not only accelerate its ambition to achieve net zero in relation to its own operations, but also provide leadership and support to enable the whole borough’s transition to net zero.”

Cllr Jenny Bokor, Leader of the Conservative Group, said: “The Conservative Group is pleased to support the motion and is committed to working with all parties to tackle climate change.

“We have made great strides in recent years to reduce the Council’s carbon footprint and we now need to take further action to continue this trend.”

The motion commits the council to declaring a climate emergency and using that declaration to continue to build on its current climate change strategy. The Council will also accelerate work with partners across the county and region to develop and implement best practice methods that can deliver carbon reductions and help limit global warming.

The motion also commits the council to providing leadership to residents, communities and businesses to support and enable the borough’s transition to net zero.

The motion comes soon after the Council adopted its Climate Change Strategy 2023-30 which sets out how the Council will work in partnership with communities, residents, organisations, and businesses to reduce emissions and help look after the environment. It also references the Council’s existing efforts to reduce its own carbon footprint.

The Council has already taken steps to reduce its impact on the environment. Since 2018, the Council has reduced net carbon emissions related to its operations by over 30 tonnes. It has also planted 14,000 trees at Hathern, introduced more electric vehicles to its fleet and is using more renewable electricity.

It is currently installing electric vehicle charging points in Sileby and Anstey car parks and has worked with other councils to help homeowners save money on solar panels.

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