Saddleworth Parish Council vows to fight climate change

Date published: 24 July 2019

Saddleworth Parish Council has committed itself to becoming carbon neutral by 2030, and set a target for the whole of Saddleworth to be carbon neutral by 2035.

Liberal Democrat leader Alan Belmore, who put forward the motion, said that “it is essential that we lead the way, working together with local businesses and people, to deliver a greener Saddleworth”.

The motion is simply the starting point, committing the environmental committee to work set targets and work with other parts of the council to create a coherent plan to deliver improvements in Saddleworth’s environment in the long term.

“There is a huge amount of work that needs to be done to achieve these ambitious targets,” continued Mr Belmore.

“If we don’t commit to these, things will not change.

“Whether it is at the Parish level, or globally, we are committed to making a difference.

“This is just the start.”

With the increasing recognition of the climate emergency facing the world, it is vital that every level of government delivers their part in changing the way we embed environmentally friendly thinking in every part of the decision-making process.

That was echoed by Liberal Democrat Councillor Sam Al-Hamdani, who added: “Building a new home releases 80 tonnes of CO2.

“Refurbishing an unused home releases around 8 tonnes.

“That’s just one example of why it can’t just be an environmental team working on its own; green thinking must be built in to every level of the Council to deliver improvements.

“And that’s also why, at the Borough level, the Liberal Democrats have been so committed to brownfield development and bringing homes back into use, rather than building on green spaces. 

“We have seen that children in local schools – and across the country – have been standing up to be counted. While this motion may put us ahead of many councils, we still need to go faster to deliver what this next generation is calling for.

“They have taken the lead – we must follow.”

The environmental committee will now be tasked with creating a long-term approach to deliver these targets, reporting back to the council on a regular basis to show how this will work in practice. 

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