Absolutely delighted that North Somerset Council has unanimously backed our call to target zero carbon by 2030 and declare a climate emergency. Huge thanks to all those members of the public who came to support or wrote to Councillors.
— Mike Bell (@ldmikebell) February 19, 2019
(1) Climate Emergency Motion – Councillor Tom Leimdorfer (Green) and Councillor Mike Bell (LibDem)
“This council recognises:
- The challenge and threat of climate change to residents and global community.
- That to keep global warming below 1.5°C we must operate within a global carbon budget. In order to reduce the chance of runaway Global Warming and limit the effects of Climate Breakdown, we need to reduce our CO2eq (carbon equivalent) emissions from their current average of 6.5 tonnes per person per year to less than 2 tonnes as soon as possible.
- Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own. Society needs to change its laws, taxation and infrastructure, to make low carbon living easier.
- North Somerset Council has already shown foresight and leadership when it comes to addressing the issue of climate change, having reduced CO2 emissions by 28.5% between 2005 – 2015 and setting a target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the equivalent of 5.8 tonnes per person, to 2.9 tonnes per person by 2035. (1)
- Unfortunately, current plans and actions are not enough. The world is on track toovershoot the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C limit before 2050 (2). The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming (3) 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 and local communities.
- Councils around the UK and the world are responding by declaring a ‘Climate Emergency’ and committing resources to address this emergency. (4)
This council will:
- Declare that it recognises a ‘Climate Emergency’.
- Take active steps to make North Somerset carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account both production and consumption emissions. (5)
- Call on Westminster to provide the powers and resources to make the 2030 target possible.
- Set up a cross-party Working Group to bring forward proposals and work with partners across the region to deliver this new goal through all relevant strategies and plans.
- Report to Full Council every six months with the actions the Council will take to address this emergency.”