Full Council notes:
1. Humans have already caused irreversible climate change, the impacts of which are
being felt around the world. Global temperatures have already increased by 1 degree
Celsius from pre-industrial levels. Atmospheric CO2 levels are above 410 parts per
million (ppm). This far exceeds the 350 ppm deemed to be a safe level for humanity;
2. In order to reduce the chance of runaway Global Warming and limit the effects of
Climate Breakdown, it is imperative that we as a species reduce our CO2eq (carbon
equivalent) emissions from their current 6.5 tonnes per person per year to less than 2
tonnes as soon as possible;1
3. Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own. Society needs to
change its laws, taxation, infrastructure, etc., to make low carbon living easier and
the new norm;
4. Carbon emissions result from both production and consumption;
5. Unfortunately, our current plans and actions are not enough. The world is on track to
overshoot the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C limit before 2050;2, 3
6. The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, published in October,
describes the enormous harm that a 2°C rise is likely to cause compared to a 1.5°C
rise, and told us that limiting Global Warming to 1.5°C may still be possible with
ambitious action from national and sub-national authorities, civil society, the private
sector, indigenous peoples and local communities 3
;
7. Councils around the world are responding by declaring a ‘Climate Emergency’ and
committing resources to address this emergency.4
Full Council believes that:
1. All governments (national, regional and local) have a duty to limit the negative
impacts of climate breakdown, and local governments that recognise this should not
wait for their national governments to change their policies. It is important for the
residents of Craven that we commit to carbon neutrality as quickly as possible;
2. The consequences of global temperature rising above 1.5°C are so severe that
preventing this from happening must be humanity’s number one priority; and,
3. Bold climate action can deliver economic benefits in terms of new jobs, economic
savings and market opportunities (as well as improved well-being for people
worldwide).
Full Council resolves to:
1. Declare a ‘Climate Emergency’;
2. Pledge to make the District of Craven carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account
both production and consumption emissions (scope 1, 2 and 3)5
;
3. Call on Westminster to provide the powers and resources to make the 2030 target
possible;
Agenda item 8a
4. Work with other governments (both within the UK and internationally) to determine
and implement best practice methods to limit Global Warming to less than 1.5°C;
5. Work with partners in Craven and across the region to deliver this new goal through
all relevant strategies and plans;
6. Report within six months the actions the Council will take to address this emergency.
References:
1. Fossil CO2 & GHG emissions of all world countries, 2017:
http://edgar.jrc.ec.europa.eu/overview.php?v=CO2andGHG1970-2016&dst=GHGpc
2. World Resources Institute: https://www.wri.org/blog/2018/10/8-things-you-needknow-about-ipcc-15-c-report
3. The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5ºC:
https://www.ipcc.ch/report/sr15/
4. Including US cities Berkeley:
https://www.theclimatemobilization.org/blog/2018/6/13/berkeley-unanimouslydeclares-climate-emergency and Hoboken:
https://www.theclimatemobilization.org/blog/2018/4/25/hoboken-resolves-to-mobilize,
and the C40 cities: https://www.c40.org/other/deadline-2020
5. Scope 1, 2 and 3 of the Greenhouse Gas Protocol explained:
https://www.carbontrust.com/resources/faqs/services/scope-3-indirect-carbonemissions
Proposed by: Councillor Andy Brown
Seconded by: Councillor David Noland