Council declares climate emergency
Rugby Borough Council has declared a climate emergency and will adopt an action plan to address the council’s impact on climate change within six months.
The declaration was made at a meeting of the Council held on Thursday (18 July), and follows the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ‘Special Report on Global Warming’ (2018) and The Committee on Climate Change’s report ‘Net Zero – the UK’s contribution to stopping global warming’ (May 2019).
In a motion adopted by the council councillors noted the progress already made, such as the urban meadows programme, which uses long grass to capture carbon and transfer it into the soil, and the use of solar panels on council buildings.
They noted that the government and numerous other councils had already declared a climate emergency.
The council committed to establish a cross party working group to advise the council’s cabinet on the actions and timescales needed to move towards carbon neutrality by 2030.
The working group will present its initial recommendations within six months.
The council will engage with partner councils, local businesses, environmental groups and residents to inform future actions.
Cllr Seb Lowe, Leader of Rugby Borough Council, said:
I am very pleased that we have been able to work across the political divide to make this declaration, and I would like to thank the opposition groups on the council for their commitment.
“The council has already made steps towards carbon neutrality, but by declaring a climate emergency we have acknowledged the significance of the issue."
Cllr Howard Roberts, Rugby Borough Council portfolio holder for environment and public realm, said: “Reducing carbon emissions is an urgent but complicated issue.
“I will be asking the cross party working group to identify all of the key factors that contribute to the council’s carbon footprint.
“This vital piece of work will help us to identify ambitious yet realistic targets to achieve carbon neutrality.”
More information on the working group and carbon neutrality will be published at www.rugby.gov.uk/carbonneutral.