Council notes:
that the impacts of climate breakdown are already causing serious damage around the
world.
that the ‘Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C’, published by the
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change in October 2018, (a) describes the
enormous harm that a 2°C average rise in global temperatures is likely to cause
compared with a 1.5°C rise, and (b) confirms that limiting Global Warming to 1.5°C
may still be possible with ambitious action from national and sub-national authorities,
civil society and the private sector;
that East Cambridgeshire is at significant risk from climate change by both drought
from reduced rainfall and flooding from rising sea levels, with the Environment Agency
reporting that the river flow on the Ely Ouse is ‘notably low’, and reports suggesting
that a 1.5o
rise in temperature would see most of East Cambs under salt water with
Ely becoming an island and the fen edge villages becoming coastal villages;
that East Cambridgeshire is a major contributor to Greenhouse gas emissions from
allowing our peat to dry out releasing CO2 into the atmosphere, burning oil and bottled
gas for heating and frequently using cars due to inadequate public transport or
provision for cyclists and pedestrians;
that all governments (national, regional and local) have a duty to act, and local
governments that recognise this should not wait for their national governments to
change their policies;
that strong policies to cut emissions also have associated health, wellbeing and
economic benefits;
and that, recognising this, a growing number of UK local authorities have already
passed ‘Climate Emergency’ motions.
Council therefore commits to:
Declare a ‘Climate Emergency’ that requires urgent action.
Make the Council, and its trading subsidiaries’ activities net-zero carbon by 2030
Achieve 100% clean energy across the Council and its trading subsidiaries’ full range
of functions by 2030
Ensure that all strategic decisions, budgets and approaches to planning decisions are
in line with a shift to zero carbon by 2030.
Support and work with all other relevant agencies towards making the entire area zero
carbon within the same timescale;
Ensure that political and chief officer leadership teams and trading subsidiaries’
Directors embed this work in all areas and take responsibility for reducing, as rapidly
as possible, the carbon emissions resulting from the Council’s activities, ensuring that
any recommendations are fully costed and that committees and full Council review
council activities taking account of production and consumption emissions and set up
a joint members and officers working group to produce an action plan within 12
months, together with budget actions and a measured baseline;
Ensure that Council considers the impact of climate change and the environment when
reviewing Council policies and strategies;
Work with, influence and inspire partners across the district, county and region to help
deliver this goal through all relevant strategies, plans and shared resources;
Council to take steps to proactively include young people in the process, ensuring that
they have a voice in shaping the future;
Establish an East Cambridgeshire Climate Change Partnership, involving councillors,
residents, young people below voting age, academics and other relevant parties, to
prioritise carbon reduction measures, identify related benefits to employment, health,
agricultural and transport sectors and develop a strategy in line with the ‘net-zero
carbon by 2030’ target;
Require East Cambs Trading Limited to investigate ways to build zero carbon homes
in East Cambridgeshire and report to Council within 12 months on the proposed ways
forward with a view to building zero carbon homes by 2022 at the latest;
Require East Cambs Street Scene Limited to work with Council officers to develop a
capital assets replacement and refurbishment programme and review work processes
to report to Council within 12 months on proposed ways forward to become a zerocarbon operation;
Ensure that all reports in preparation for the 2020/21 and future budget cycles and
investment strategies will take into account the actions the council will take to address
this emergency;
Ask officers to investigate the most appropriate training for members and officers about
how to promote carbon neutral policies for future consideration by Council;
Write to the Secretary of State to request that Government provides the powers,
resources and help with funding to make this possible, and ask local MPs to do
likewise;
Consider other actions that could be implemented, including (but not restricted to):
renewable energy generation and storage, providing electric vehicle infrastructure and
encouraging alternatives to private car use, increasing the efficiency of buildings, in
particular to address fuel poverty; proactively using local planning powers to accelerate
the delivery of net zero-carbon new developments and communities, coordinating a
series of information and training events to raise awareness and share good practice.
Proposer – Cllr Mark Inskip
Seconder – Cllr Charlotte Cane