Which areas of Suffolk are pledging to tackle climate change?
PUBLISHED: 15:23 26 July 2019 | UPDATED: 16:58 29 July 2019
Three Suffolk councils have vowed to tackle climate change in the county after declaring a state of climate emergency.
East Suffolk and Mid Suffolk councils declared a state of climate emergency at their meetings this week, and pledged to set up task forces which will work to find ways of reducing their carbon footprint.
Babergh acknowledged a state of climate emergency, but went one step short of formally declaring the situation.
All three have pledged to be carbon neutral by 2030.
Conservative cabinet member for environment, Jessica Fleming put forward Mid Suffolk's motion. She said: "There is a clear role for all Suffolk councils to work together to achieve real progress, and I look forward to bringing Mid Suffolk into that framework, to develop and co-ordinate environmental action into this county and to the region."
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Each council will set up a task force in September that will come up with measures and policies to reduce carbon emissions in its work.
It is anticipated those groups will report back with first updates within six months.
Babergh Green councillor Robert Lindsay said: "It means that every single policy of the council that we decide on has to be scrutinised to see whether it moves towards the goal of reducing carbon or actually increases carbon."
East Suffolk Green councillor Rachel Smith-Lyte, who put forward their motion, said: "This is a huge relief. Of course this is just the start, but now at least now we have a mandate to look at and change the way we do things as a council and bring budgets into line with the reality of de-carbonising our buildings and local services to net zero by 2030. Its great to get cross-party consensus - this was always far too important to be left to party politics."
West Suffolk Council's cabinet agreed a climate emergency motion should go to the authority's next full council meeting, following a motion put forward by the Labour group at the last full council meeting.
Elizabeth Malvisi, Conservative cabinet member for environment at Babergh said: "Tackling climate change cannot just be left to national government - it is everyone's duty to do what they can to stop this existential threat to our planet."
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