Climate Emergency Declarations

I think most will agree, our there’s no point dealing with National Politics & Politicians at present as they are literally busy achieving nothing with their heads buried in the Brexit sand with earplugs in! The only output we’ve seen from them in recent months is the backward step of closing the Feed In Tariff in direct opposition to all consultee feedback & publishing a very weak replacement in the form of the Smart Export Guarantee (see last blog for more). Undoubtedly, we will make the best of what is left, but can’t help but be shocked by this move, justified to save customers £1/year, when we have an international need for drastic & decisive Climate Action with clean energy at its heart.

Anyhow, we’ve gone back to the early 90s and have been ‘Thinking Globally, Acting Locally’ by putting pressure on County & Local Councils to take decisive Climate Action. Working with various groups driving a ‘bottom up’ groundswell of political Climate Action, Mark has led or supported motions to Penryn Town Council, Mabe Parish Council, Falmouth Town Council & Cornwall Council to declare a ‘Climate Emergency’ with a mandate to be Zero Carbon by 2030. The aim of the groundswell is to demonstrate with there is an unshakeable foundation of support on this issue that National & International Politicians can no longer ignore. This relies on the majority of local government making the declaration, not the minority as it has been in the past. Lots of leading councils have made this declaration starting with Bristol City & followed by London, Manchester, Leicester & our own Cornwall. A map of the declarations worldwide can be found here. The only one to consider & decline has been Sheffield, at the present time we don’t understand why.

In Cornwall, all motions have been well received, with successful declarations in all but Mabe who could not formally consider until their February meeting next week.

Mark & Matt looking over Full Council declaring Climate Emergency 22.1.19


Mark, Matt & Ruth at the Cornwall Full Council Meeting where a Climate Emergency was declared 22.1.19

We are immensely proud of the efforts of all involved in this move forwards. It was particularly uplifting to see Cornwall Council vote with a huge majority, nearly unanimously, to strengthen the motion & commit to the hard targets of this declaration – our County Politicians deserve a massive amount of praise and credit, a rare thing indeed.

If you’re interested in putting this motion to your local council, get in touch and we will share the materials & info pack put together by Mark which is now being used countrywide.

Next Steps: For those passionate about this issue, we all need to follow up & support Cornwall Council to deliver their commitments & targets.

We can make a difference, but it requires action – if you’re waiting for somebody to do something, remember you are somebody.