South Kesteven councillors agree stricter climate targets
South Kesteven District Council has agreed tighter targets for its Climate Emergency, but some still don’t think it goes far enough.
Members of the full council voted in favour of an amendment to a climate change motion agreed by the authority’s cabinet earlier this month.
Independent Councillor Ashley Baxter called for the authority to set a target to reduce its own carbon footprint by at least 30 per cent by 2030 and become net-zero carbon “as soon as viable” before 2050.
He welcomed collaboration but said the original motion, which had no targets “did not go nearly far enough”.
“We need to do as much as we can, as quick as we can,” he said.
“Let’s be ambitious,” he added, calling the targets a “line in the sand that says this is where we want to get to”.
The amended motion will also create new performance measures.
Conservative Cabinet member Coun Dr Peter Moseley said declaring a climate emergency was “the rightthing to do, we should have done it earlier but we are here now”.
Labour Councillor Charmaine Morgan called it a “call to arms” but said more needed to be done at local and national level.
Some called for new policies to be introduced at planning stage, including revisiting SKDC’s local plan and requesting help through developers’ contributions.
Other councillors said they could not see what the motion would do.
Conservative Councillor Ian Stokes said: “I’m very old and I’ve seen a lot of climate change in my time.
“I really can’t see what benefit we do here with all this palaver. Nobody in this country would not do this but it’s worldwide and nobody worldwide is helping.”
Conservative Councillor Bob Broughton said he could not support the £50,000 spend on a Climate Change Officer, despite claims the role would enable the authority to “hit the ground running”.
More by this authorGraham Newton