Climate Emergency Declared By Adur & Worthing Councils
A climate change emergency has been declared by Adur &Worthing Councils, which aims to see the authorities become carbon neutral by 2030.
In their 2018 report UN experts warned we have just 12 years to act to limit catastrophic runaway climate change which will expose millions to flooding, heatwaves, poverty, drought, food shortages, biodiversity loss and the collapse of economies.
The term climate emergency has been adopted by Parliament and Local Authorities across the UK, including Adur and Worthing Council, in response to the urgent need to prioritise carbon reduction, to avoid the devastating consequences on inaction on climate.
Adur & Worthing Councils have already made good progress on reducing carbon emissions by 30% between 2012 and 2019.
Now, in the face of stark warnings from scientists about the global crisis affecting our planet, the Councils have upped their game, bringing forward their carbon neutral target from 2050 to 2030. The Councils’ are now embarking on a programme of work over the coming decade to reduce carbon emissions and transition to clean transport for all council services and operations, improve energy efficiency of council buildings, and install renewable energy.
Adur & Worthing’s Joint Strategic Committee (JSC) have made the climate emergency declaration, to act as a catalyst for the Councils to become carbon neutral earlier than originally planned.
Councillor Neil Parkin, leader of Adur District Council said, “The Council is committed to showing leadership on the climate agenda setting the target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030 turns an abstract goal into a reality.
“We invite all our partners and residents to join us in local action which is ambitious, but achievable, and will help protect our local community for future generations.”
Councillor Daniel Humphreys, leader of Worthing Borough Council said, “The Council is dedicated to making a difference, we are willing to take action and promise to play our part at a local level.
“While clearly we can’t do this on our own, the more organisations who join in with this declaration the more powerful the action will be.
“We have built a strong foundation from which we can reduce our carbon emissions, and look to provide future energy security, affordability and resilience.”
Adur & Worthing Councils becoming carbon neutral would virtually eliminate carbon emissions from council energy use and transport. It will involve improvements in energy efficiency and increasing renewable energy on council buildings and land, while moving towards using more electric vehicles. There is over £700,00 allocated by Adur & Worthing Councils to deliver energy efficiency and renewable energy improvements within the 2019/20 capital programme.
Strong commitments have also been made by the Councils under their environmental programme, called Sustainable AW, to reduce carbon emissions. LED lighting upgrades have so far saved 98 tonnes of carbon dioxide a year, while solar panels have saved 32 tonnes.
The drive for greater change is already underway, the go ahead has been given to purchase two, new, ultra low emission, electric waste and street cleansing vehicles as party of a rolling programme which will see the electrification of the fleet over the coming years. These will be the first vehicles within the Councils’ fleet to become electric; providing air quality benefits, and financial and carbon emissions savings. Meanwhile, a plan to lower carbon is in production to identify a pathway to achieve the 2030 target; actions needed; and a monitoring programme. A staff travel action plan is being implemented to support greater active travel by walking and cycling for business travel and commuting; while preparations are being made to increase the provision of electric vehicle charge points across Adur and Worthing.