Climate Emergency One Year On

11 December 2019

Last December Sarah Sharp put a motion to the City Council about the Climate Emergency which was finally adopted in the summer by the City Council after numerous debates.

One year on the 4 Green Party Councillors on the City Council find that progress has been "painstakingly slow". Debbie Carter, City Councillor, commented that she was "disappointed with the lack of progress from the city council. As a retired nurse, I believe in science and the many hundreds of qualified,  informed scientists that explain the need to act now or face extinction. I hoped that the we would have some positive actions by now."

There are plans afoot for a Tree Summit which was put forward in a motion to the City Council in the autumn and passed by the City Council.  Volunteer Tree Wardens are particularly keen on bringing all the landowners in the City together to work out where best to plant more trees to increase our tree cover to 20%. Working jointly will unlock funding sources not open to individuals or smaller organisations.

The other key area that businesses and householders need to look at is the way we insulate and heat our homes and businesses. An Energy Fayre is being planned also for the spring where in one place information will be available on the large range of sustainable techniques that can be used to insulate homes and generate energy more sustainably eg solar panels and air source heat pumps, green roofs and water harvesting ideas . This will be an opportunity for members of the public to find out about all the things we can do to improve our homes. A series of talks will also be held on energy matters.

Sarah Sharp commented "We shall see what next year brings but I hope that the Climate Emergency Task and Finish Group can take forward these projects with greater urgency next year. There are so many actions we need to prioritize as we all know time is running out according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change which gave us 10 years to reduce our carbon emissions. 2020 will be the time for action not words. If we don't work on setting targets and working out milestones we need to reach on the way we won't have a chance of reaching the end goal of carbon neutrality by 2050, let alone 2030". 

Sarah has been approached by the largest Eco Centre in the UK which is based in South Chichester on Quarry Lane and is keen to support the Energy Fayre and she says she is "resolutely hopeful that this collaboration will be the start of something big in 2020. Householders will be encouraged to look into making sure their homes are warm - we all have a role to play in the Climate Emergency. We hope that landlords will also be keen to see their tenants can live in warm homes where health and well being aren't compromised."

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