Liberal Democrats supporting climate change protest - reinforcing their climate emergency motion on Newcastle City Council

September 19, 2019 1:59 PM

Climate change logoLiberal Democrats councillors and activists will be out in force tomorrow in Newcastle City Centre following up their Climate Emergency motion and the stratedy approved by their Party Conference with a street protest locally.

"Our children have shown us the way. Come and join us and make your voice count - we only have one world, it's our responsibility to do everything we can to stop any further damage to the environment and climate change. We'll be joining other protests at the Civic Centre at 11am.

"Our planet is in crisis, balanced on a knife-edge at the point of no return. As with Brexit, the poorest in society will suffer first and suffer most deeply."
At a Constitutional Committee meeting of the Council today to discuss setting up a Climate Convention, Cllr Griff Kane said :

• The Council shouldn't hide behind the 'only responsible for 5% of emissions' line , The Council is in charge of most of the highways & byways in the city, own 25% of the housing stock and purchases substantial products and services locally so the its influence on the carbon footprint of the City is much larger and they should acknowledge and embrace this.

• The document debated by the Committee isn't clear on how the three elements will interact and how the results will be 'processed' - for instance, none of the Waste Commission's recommended targets made it into the Waste Strategy (which is the most embarrassingly pathetic substance-free 'strategy' I have ever seen).

• Getting a truly representative 'citizen's assembly' will be a real challenge.

• We had a successful Climate Change Partnership pre-2011 when the Liberal Democrats controlled the Council, and we hope the convention would be action-oriented, not just a talking shop.

• The Liberal Democrats will be delighted to take up the 3 seats on the Climate Committee - it has been suggested that the nominations go to October Council along with the proposal for the Committee to be set up.

Wera Hobhouse MP, Liberal Democrats parliamentary spokesperson on environment, wrote about the Party's ambitious strategy to reach net zero carbon by 2045. :

"We are committed to this target - and we have set out a clear path for how communities, businesses, and government can achieve it. The Liberal Democrats will:
  • Empower councils and give them the resources to reduce emissions and set up green projects in a way that makes sense in their own communities
  • Plant 60 million trees a year, every year, which is one tree for every person in the UK
  • Convert rail networks to ultra-low-emission technology (electric or hydrogen) by 2035
  • Ban non-recyclable single-use plastics within three years
  • and a whole lot more
There's no time for wringing our hands when it comes to the climate crisis. Our new policy lays out a credible plan for fast, effective action to beat global heating."