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Herts County Council declares climate emergency as pressure grows on East Herts to follow

Climate change protest
Climate change protest

Hertfordshire County Council declared a climate emergency on Tuesday (July 16) – eight days before East Herts Council will be asked to do the same.

The Liberal Democrat, Labour and Green parties have joined forces to table a motion at next Wednesday’s (July 24) meeting of the full district council.

They say: “All governments whether national, regional or local have a duty to limit the negative impacts of climate change and need to commit to aggressive reduction targets and carbon neutrality as quickly as possible. East Herts District Council has a pivotal role to play in tackling climate change and enabling sustainable living.”

At County Hall, the declaration received unanimous cross-party support.

The motion commits Herts County Council to develop a Sustainable Hertfordshire Strategy that will set out the policies and implementation plans needed to embed sustainability across all of the council's operations and services.

The leader, Cllr David Williams, who proposed the motion, said: “I’m pleased that we’ve made this important declaration.

“As a county council, we’re well placed not just to reduce our own environmental impact but to help the whole county become more sustainable.

"If we make the right policies and decisions we can help reduce carbon emissions, improve air quality, promote energy efficiency, reduce waste, promote more environmentally friendly land use and more.

“This declaration is only the beginning, of course, and now we need to develop our Sustainable Hertfordshire Strategy to identify the practical steps we need to make environmental sustainability business as usual for us as we work with the ten district councils to manage growth in the county.”

The Sustainable Hertfordshire Strategy will be presented to the county council’s cabinet before the end of the year. It will build on existing initiatives, including the county council’s air quality, energy, climate change resilient communities and pollinator strategies and work to promote recycling and reduce single-use plastics.

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