Last night (Wednesday, 26 July), a meeting of all East Herts councillors voted unanimously to widen the scope of the council’s existing climate change motion and to declare a climate emergency.
Councillors previously made a climate declaration in 2019, committing the council to becoming a carbon neutral organisation by 2030. The new motion now commits the council to reducing its own carbon footprint to an absolute minimum by 2027 whilst at the same time identifying a pathway to offset its residual carbon. This means that by 2027 the council will have a clear plan in place to deliver its services with net zero carbon emissions.
It also commits the council to publishing annual eco-audits that residents and businesses will be invited to scrutinise and input to, including through an annual meeting. Additionally, the council will provide advice and assistance to East Herts residents and businesses to inspire and encourage their own shifts away from carbon producing activities.
Councillor Tim Hoskin, Executive Member for Environmental Sustainability, said: “We are pleased to have Full Council's support for this motion, acknowledging the urgent nature of the climate crisis. We have committed to greater transparency and openness in our journey towards achieving net zero and we look forward to hosting a public meeting, where residents and businesses can engage with us, share their ideas, and collectively shape our path to a more sustainable future."
Further information, including the council’s Declaration of a Climate Emergency, is available online.