York votes unanimously to Get Serious
York City Council became the latest council to support Friends of the Earth's Get Serious About CO2 campaign.
The local group lobbied hard for a strong target and was rewarded as the Council agreed to:
- Sign up to the Get Serious About CO2 campaign
- Deliver a minimum 40% reduction of CO2 emissions in York by 2020
- Produce an action plan to deliver that reduction.
York Friends of the Earth spent the summer raising awareness about the campaign.
With stalls at various events, from village fetes to summer festivals, they got hundreds of postcards signed.
The group then lobbied councillors all over the city.
With group members living in different wards, they were able to visit local ward committee meetings to explain the campaign.
Press coverage followed, as a photo opportunity was arranged with council leader Andrew Waller who was photographed with the postcards and a giant 40% sign.
The group also held a public meeting called the Climate Connection just before Copenhagen.
The meeting, which linked local and global action on climate change, raised the idea of a 40% target for York.
And with local MP Hugh Bayley present, as well as the leader of the council and a number of other councillors, the pressure was on the decision-makers.
Following the meeting, Dave Merrett, a councillor from the minority Labour party, proposed an amendment to a separate motion on the environment.
This amendment read:
The Council resolves to sign up to the Friends of the Earth Get Serious About CO2 campaign and to discuss with the Without Walls partners, local businesses and organisations about how York can deliver a minimum 40% reduction of CO2 emissions from York by 2020, and the production of an action plan to deliver that reduction.
The motion was passed unanimously.
Without Walls is the Local Strategic Partnership and York Friends of the Earth is now supporting the council in drawing up a Climate Change Action plan to deliver these cuts.