Waltham Forest Lib Dems Secure Local Climate Change Resolution

Cllr Bob Belam discusses local climate change action with senior Lib Dem MP Chris HuhneLocal Liberal Democrats have expressed their delight after Councillors last night backed their plans to put climate change awareness at the heart of the Council’s agenda.

The successful motion calls on Cabinet to undertake a series of initiatives aimed at ‘greening’ the way in which the Council works.  These include a commitment to greater heat and light efficiency in council buildings, renewed efforts to maximise the use of renewable energy and a borough-wide campaign to bring about a voluntary ban on the provision of free plastic shopping bags.

After a heated debate, Lib Dem councillors angrily rejected a Labour amendment to the motion that deleted 25 paragraphs of text and removed a Liberal Democrat proposal for a ‘Climate Change Impact Assessment’ to be included in all reports produced for Council.  Councillors eventually passed the Lib Dem motion unanimously.

Cllr Bob Belam, who moved the motion on behalf of the Lib Dems, said that the introduction of a ‘Climate Change Impact Assessment’ would make environmental considerations central to the work of the Council and provide for a more joined-up approach to tackling climate change.

Cllr Belam said:

“Local authorities are now rightly being put under pressure to deliver practical results with regard to the environment.  Waltham Forest residents are already playing their part through the excellent uptake of waste recycling that will save significant sums of money in landfill costs.

“The Climate Change Impact Assessment is central to our motion as it will ensure transparency regarding the Council’s commitment to addressing residents environmental concerns.  It will also put the consideration of climate change issues at the front and centre of everything the Council does.

During the debate, Cllr Belam also reassured councillors and residents that the proposals outlined in the motion would actually save taxpayers money.

“We are proposing simple but effective measures that will make the way the Council works cheaper and more environmentally friendly.

“Liberal Democrats want Council to become standard bearers for our residents, businesses and other local authorities by proving that making small changes to the way in which we live and work can make a significant difference in the fight against harmful climate change.”

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