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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Tewkesbury Borough Council Offices, Severn Room

Contact: Democratic Services Tel: 01684 272021  Email:  democraticservices@tewkesbury.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

29.

Announcements

When the continuous alarm sounds you must evacuate the building by the nearest available fire exit. Members and visitors should proceed to the visitors’ car park at the front of the building and await further instructions (during office hours staff should proceed to their usual assembly point; outside of office hours proceed to the visitors’ car park). Please do not re-enter the building unless instructed to do so.

 

In the event of a fire any person with a disability should be assisted in leaving the building.

Minutes:

29.1           The evacuation procedure, as noted on the Agenda, was advised to those present.

30.

Apologies for Absence and Substitutions

To receive apologies for absence and advise of any substitutions. 

Minutes:

30.1          Apologies for absence were received from Councillors C L J Carter, J K Smith and S A T Stevens.  Councillors D W Gray and D J Harwood would be acting as substitutes for the meeting.

31.

Declarations of Interest

Pursuant to the adoption by the Council on 26 June 2012 of the Tewkesbury Borough Council Code of Conduct, effective from 1 July 2012, as set out in Minute No. CL.34, Members are invited to declare any interest they may have in the business set out on the Agenda to which the approved Code applies.

Minutes:

31.1          The Committee’s attention was drawn to the Tewkesbury Borough Council Code of Conduct which was adopted by the Council on 26 June 2012 and took effect from 1 July 2012.

31.2          There were no declarations of interest made on this occasion.

32.

Notice of Motion - Declaring a Climate Change Emergency

To consider the following motion, which was deferred at Council on 30 July 2019, and to make a recommendation to Council on how to proceed:

 

Humans have already caused devastating climate change, the impacts of which are being felt around the world. Global temperatures have already increased by 1 degree Celsius from pre-industrial levels.  Atmospheric C02 levels are above 400 parts per million (ppm).  This far exceeds the 350ppm deemed to be a safe level for humanity;

 

In order to reduce the chance of runaway Global Warming and limit the effects of Climate Breakdown, it is imperative that we as species reduce our C02eq (carbon equivalent) emissions from their current 6.5 tonnes per year to less than 2 tonnes as soon as possible;

 

Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own.  Society needs to change its laws, taxation, infrastructure, etc., to make low carbon living easier and the new norm;

 

Carbon emissions result from both production and consumption;

 

Tewkesbury Borough Council has already addressed the problem of single use plastics and has shown a strong commitment to recycling and sustainable transport but more needs to be done.

 

In Gloucestershire the consequences of no action include:

 

·         Increased risk of flash flooding and the resulting damage to buildings, crops, farmland and infrastructure as a result of more extreme rainfall events.

·         Health problems due to increased heat stress particularly for vulnerable adults and children.

·         Increased costs associated with changes to crops and biodiversity.

·         Higher energy costs.

·         Crop failures associated with extreme heat, such as was experienced in 2018.

The County Council has already recognised more needs to be done and has created an additional cabinet role with responsibility for overseeing the authority’s approach to prevention of, mitigation of, and adaptation of climate change.

 

The government believes that a shift to a very low carbon energy future represents the best course for the country’s economic development while lowering the risk of fuel poverty and reducing air pollution.

 

In view of the above the Council is asked to:

 

·         declare a “Climate Emergency”.

·         commit to doing all in its power to make Tewkesbury Borough Council carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account both production and consumption emissions.

·         set up a Working Group consisting of seven Members of the Council (to be nominated at this evening’s meeting) to prepare a long-term plan to achieve this, together with any initial budgetary requirements, to be reported back to the Executive Committee in October.

·         call upon central government to provide additional powers and resources to support local and national action towards the 2030 target.

·         commit to working with partners in Gloucestershire to achieve Countywide carbon neutrality aims.

 

Minutes:

32.1          The Chair advised that, at the meeting on 30 July 2019, the Council had referred the following motion to the Overview and Scrutiny Committee in order to consider the wording and make a recommendation back to the Council meeting on 1 October 2019:

Humans have already caused devastating climate change, the impacts of which are being felt around the world. Global temperatures have already increased by 1 degree Celsius from pre-industrial levels.  Atmospheric C02 levels are above 400 parts per million (ppm).  This far exceeds the 350ppm deemed to be a safe level for humanity;

In order to reduce the chance of runaway Global Warming and limit the effects of Climate Breakdown, it is imperative that we as species reduce our C02eq (carbon equivalent) emissions from their current 6.5 tonnes per year to less than 2 tonnes as soon as possible

Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own.  Society needs to change its laws, taxation, infrastructure, etc., to make low carbon living easier and the new norm;

Carbon emissions result from both production and consumption;

Tewkesbury Borough Council has already addressed the problem of single use plastics and has shown a strong commitment to recycling and sustainable transport but more needs to be done.

In Gloucestershire the consequences of no action include:

·           Increased risk of flash flooding and the resulting damage to buildings, crops, farmland and infrastructure as a result of more extreme rainfall events.

·           Health problems due to increased heat stress particularly for vulnerable adults and children.

·           Increased costs associated with changes to crops and biodiversity.

·           Higher energy costs.

·           Crop failures associated with extreme heat, such as was experienced in 2018.

The County Council has already recognised more needs to be done and has created an additional cabinet role with responsibility for overseeing the authority’s approach to prevention of, mitigation of, and adaptation of climate change.

The government believes that a shift to a very low carbon energy future represents the best course for the country’s economic development while lowering the risk of fuel poverty and reducing air pollution.

In view of the above the Council is asked to:

·           Declare a “Climate Emergency”.

·           Commit to doing all in its power to make Tewkesbury Borough Council carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account both production and consumption emissions.

·           Set up a Working Group consisting of seven Members of the Council (to be nominated at this evening’s meeting) to prepare a long-term plan to achieve this, together with any initial budgetary requirements, to be reported back to the Executive Committee in October.

·           Call upon central government to provide additional powers and resources to support local and national action towards the 2030 target.

·           Commit to working with partners in Gloucestershire to achieve Countywide carbon neutrality aims.

32.2          The Chair invited the proposer of the motion to address the Committee.  The proposer of the motion indicated that she wished to begin with a definition of a climate emergency which referred to catastrophic changes to the world's climate caused  ...  view the full minutes text for item 32.