Nottingham Labour Urges Support for Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill

Nottingham Labour has put a motion at the July Full Council meeting urging the Government to support the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill, highlighting their own ambition to be carbon neutral by 2028.

The Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill is a Private Members Bill originally tabled by Caroline Lucas MP and supported by figures like Nottingham East MP Nadia Whittome. The Bill has been drafted by  scientists, legal experts, ecological economists and environmentalists and seeks to reverse the climate crisis the world is facing. It currently has support from 110 MPs from across 8 different political parties that represent representing England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, though a date has not yet been set for it to have its Second Reading in Parliament.

Highlighting the need for the Government to get serious on climate change, Deputy Leader Cllr Sally Longford said “Only recently we have seen record breaking heat waves and terrifying fires in parts of Canada and the USA, and in the last few days in Germany and Belgium devastating flooding, causing loss of life and huge disruption to communities and the economy. Such events are becoming more frequent and we, in Nottingham could find ourselves similarly affected if internationally we do not join together to reduce emissions and stop the destruction of natural habitats.”

In the 2019 local elections Nottingham Labour committed to making Nottingham carbon neutral by 2028, the first country in the UK to do so.  In June last year the City Council published its plan to achieve this with the Carbon Neutral Action Plan.

Speaking on what has already been done locally to help tackle climate change Cllr Longford highlighted public transport as one key area, saying “We have done great work in the past, developing sustainable public transport systems, which are the envy of many cities, thanks in part to the workplace parking levy. We have benefitted from better air quality than other similar cities across the country and we must continue to make progress, by working with local businesses and organisations to help them and their employees to travel and move their goods sustainably.”

Looking forward though Cllr Longford was keen to stress the importance of planning reform, commenting that “As a member of the Planning Committee I know how important it is that we improve the sustainability of new developments, and so will be glad to see us equipped with better tools to help developers make the right decisions in the city. We must also press ahead with improving older properties, to retro-fit draughty homes to make them more comfortable, with better insulation and renewable energy. This will require external funding and we must make use of every avenue available to continue to reduce fuel poverty. We recently announced more homes will benefit from retro-fitting in Sneinton and across the city and there will be more to come.”

All Nottingham Labour councillors will vote in support of the motion.