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Councillors vote to support new climate and ecological emergency bill

Published Thursday 15 July, 2021
Last updated on Thursday 15 July, 2021

Councillors have voted unanimously to support the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, which has been presented to the House of Commons.

At the last council meeting (23 Jun), following a speech by the newly appointed climate and ecological emergency cabinet member Cllr Tim Valentine, councillors voted unanimously to support the new bill.

The bill requires the Government to draw up a strategy to meet our commitments under the Paris agreement to cut carbon emissions to halt the degradation and loss of nature and to restore soils and habitats.

Cllr Tim Valentine, cabinet member for the climate emergency at the council, said:

“Last December the Government announced a new target of reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 78% by 2035 and a 10-point plan for a green industrial revolution.

“The new Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill requires the Government to draw up a strategy to turn this ambition into climate action.

“We declared a climate and ecological emergency here at the council in June 2019 and our action plan outlines steps we will take to reduce our carbon emissions and restore nature across the borough by 2030.

“We are doing all we can, however, as a borough council, we need support and funding from the Government to reach our goals. For example, by insulating homes and investing in better, cleaner public transport.

“We committed to call on the Government to provide the powers and resources we need to reach our 2030 target, and that is exactly what we are doing by supporting the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill.

“At the current Government targets, the planet only has a 50 per cent chance of limiting global warming by 1.5 degrees Celsius. This is just not enough.

“We are calling on the Government to pass the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill and make good on its promise to significantly reduce emissions.

“With the proper funding and support, local councils and organisations around the country can make the leaps and strides needed to meet the targets that humanity needs.

To find out more about the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill visit www.ceebill.uk/bill.

For more information about Swale council’s actions to tackle the Climate and Ecological Emergency visit www.swale.gov.uk/cee-update.