Bath and NE Somerset Climate Emergency Declaration is just the start

19 March 2019

Congratulations to our councillors for responding to the increasing urgency to make B&NES carbon-neutral by 2030 at the latest, making B&NES the latest council to join the list that have declared a climate emergency, which began last year from a motion submitted by Bristol City Council’s Green councillors. For decades now, we have watched with mounting alarm at the lack of action from all levels of authority, both public and private, as the full scale of the impact of climate change becomes ever more obvious. The publication of the IPCC report last year set out the urgency of action needed in stark language that should stir every single person into action. The motion passed by our council last Thursday requires them to set out a report within 6 months showing how we will achieve this, and to work with every organisation within our area to ensure it then succeeds.
I was at the council meeting and listened carefully to all comments made by councillors there. While it was heartening to hear many councillors stating how they had changed their own attitudes in the last few months, it was also depressing that nearly half of them also voted against the first meaningful action asked of them, to oppose the expansion of Bristol Airport. Many of us have long been campaigning to alert people to the dangers that climate change is bringing to every single person on this planet, but it was obvious at the meeting that what had caught councillors’ attention were the actions of the schoolchildren, some their own offspring, who have been gathering outside of the Guildhall once a month, following the actions of Greta Thunberg in Sweden. They have shown that we all bear responsibility to ensure that we leave this world in a state fit for our future generations.
Jon Lucas, BaNES Green Party

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