#Climate Emergency motion, annotated version. #Manchester

A “Climate Emergency” motion will be debated and voted upon by the 96 elected members of Manchester City Council.  The debate takes place on Wednesday 10th July, at 10am, as part of the Full Council meeting, which members of the public are able to attend without pre-booking or payment.  We at Climate Emergency Manchester urge you to lobby your councillors to come out in support of this motion before the debate.  Details on how to find out who your councillors are, and suggestions of what you might say, are to be found here.

Below is the text of the motion, as it stands (on the day, amendments may be proposed, which either weaken or strengthen the motion).  In the third column are some comments.  If you yourself have comments, please either use the comments section under this blog, or else email us* on climateemergencymanchester@gmail.com

No. Text of the motion Comments
This Council notes:

●        The serious risks to Manchester’s people, of climate change/global heating affecting economic, social and environmental well-being, supply chains – including food security, financial systems and local weather, among many others.

Indeed. And to future generations, and to other species…
●        That in 2008 the ‘Principles of Tackling Climate Change in Manchester’ were agreed as a call to action to engage people from all walks of life in climate change action and, build support for a new way of thinking about climate change. Thank you Neil Swannick, the last really radical Executive Member for the Environment
●        That Manchester leads the way , with an agreed Paris compliant carbon budget set in December 2018 and an acceleration of the target for becoming a zero-carbon city by 12 years, setting 2038 as the new target for the city, based on research from the world-renowned Tyndall Centre for Climate Change. Whenever someone says “Paris compliant” remember this – even if by some miracle all the Paris pledges turned to deeds, we’d have about 3.4 degrees of warming. Also – ‘leads the way’? Um, ‘low carbon culture’, anyone?
●        The recent and welcome upsurge of action by the young people of Manchester, exemplifying the radical traditions of which Manchester is proud. Yes, pity the GMP don’t agree.
This Council agrees to:
1 Declare a Climate Emergency. Yay.  Forced into it because all the other core cities had already declared!
2 Continue working with partners across Manchester and GMCA to deliver the 2038 target, and determine if an earlier target can be possible, through a transparent and open review. How transparent and open the review actually is will be one to watch…
3 Become carbon neutral by the earliest possible date. Here is what the current Exec Member for the Environment said during her recent election campaign to retain her council seat – “…there is a strong argument that the target should be 2030, and I would like to see Manchester aiming for this, but of course we need to bring our partners in the economic activity of the city and above all the people we represent along with us as well”
4 Encourage involvement in all wards by April 2020 through meetings as part of the Our Manchester strategy, to identify residents and partners who want to be actively involved in achieving the target, with provision for those who cannot attend. Ensure ward plans contain specific, measurable, achievable steps. Our Manchester = “The Manchester Strategy sets a long-term vision for Manchester’s future and describes how we will achieve it.” Btw, that these residents and partners need – after ten years of ‘Steering Groups’ and ‘Agency’ bluster – to be identified, says something about how effective those groups have been, no?
5 Review all policies, processes and procedures to ensure the council can become carbon neutral
6 Present an action plan by March 2020 detailing how the city can stay within its carbon budget.
7 Report back regularly to the NESC.. NESC = Neighbourhoods and Environment Scrutiny Committee. It is one of the Council’s 6 Scrutiny Committees. It’s next meeting is on Weds July 17, at 2pm. Climate Emergency Manchester folks will be there., please join us!
8 Review the corporate plan
9 Work with the Tyndall Centre to review the actual emissions from aviation. Investigate the best way to include aviation in our overall carbon reduction programme in the long term. This could be extremely interesting
10 Make climate breakdown and the environment, an integral part of activity throughout the Council, including all decision making, ensuring key decisions take into account the impact on achieving the zero-carbon target and including an environmental impact assessment in all relevant committee reports. This is basically a re-statement of the low carbon culture goal – the second goal of the 2009 plan. No attempt was ever made to implement this
11 Ensure that everyone in the council receives carbon literacy training by the end of 2020. Make attendance easier by varying times and length of sessions. Carbon literacy was launched in 2012 by Richard Leese. In 2017 he finally did his training. #leadingbyexample
12 Encourage all staff on council business to use the lowest carbon, appropriate, travel. Watch this space…
13 Investigate measures to ensure future procurement is carbon neutral. Increase the percentage of social value with an additional environmental element.
14 Work with suppliers to green their supply chains, and support local production
15 Work with training providers to ensure Manchester residents can take on green jobs Excellent!
16 Investigate and introduce measures to help reach domestic zero carbon levels including addressing fuel poverty and retrofitting existing homes. This would be easier if the Conservative Government of David Cameron had not abolished the Zero Carbon Homes programme in 2015.
17 Investigate ways to ensure that future local plans place a mandatory requirement for all new development to be net zero carbon by the earliest possible date.
18 Push GMCA to decarbonise public transport, heat and energy as early as possible.
19 Through our role on GMPF, encourage divestment in fossil fuels as early as possible Wanna help make this happen?  Fossil Free Greater Manchester is the campaigning group for you…
Call on the government to:
20 Provide powers and resources to make the zero-carbon target possible including funding for big capital projects.
21 Accelerate the reduction of carbon emissions from aviation.
22 Accelerate the decarbonisation of the electricity grid, funding low carbon energy generation.
23 Ensure that the UK prosperity fund focuses on enabling the transition to a low carbon economy. “The Prosperity Fund aims to remove barriers to economic growth and promote the economic reform and development needed to reduce poverty in partner countries”  The one nod to Manchester/UK global responsibilities…

[Sole author of this blogpost = Marc Hudson]