Lancashire should aim to cut out carbon by 2030, says county councillor

Lancashire County Council should devise a formal plan to move the region's economy away from carbon by the end of the decade, according to the sole Green Party member on the authority.

By Paul Faulkner
Tuesday, 15th December 2020, 10:50 am
Updated Tuesday, 15th December 2020, 10:54 am

Gina Dowding will present a motion to a meeting of the full council later this week calling for County Hall to draw up a decarbonisation strategy within the space of the next four months.

It will suggest that Lancashire commits to meeting year-on-year minimum emissions reduction targets, including those advised by the government’s own committee on climate change – and also incorporate the plan into the work of the Lancashire Enterprise Partnership’s (LEP) local industrial strategy.

County Cllr Dowding says she will be asking the ruling Conservative group on the authority to support her proposals – and that the chair of the LEP, Steve Fogg, has indicated he would back the move.

County Cllr Gina Dowding

The Local Democracy Reporting Service understands that the Tory group will be considering its position on the matter in the days leading up to the meeting.

County Cllr Dowding said that the need for “scale and speed of action to prevent climate chaos is now widely acknowledged by business leaders, citizens and all levels of government”.

She added: The sooner we start a fair transition to a zero-carbon economy the better, as there are many gains and benefits to be had for residents and businesses.

“A green economy creates cleaner energy, and better quality, warm homes and green transport for everyone. For businesses, there are opportunities for creating green jobs and training, applying the model of a circular economy and increasing biodiversity through better land management and agriculture practices.”

As part of the motion, the county council will also be asked to call on local financial services to stimulate investment in low-carbon businesses and support moves towards the development of modular building in Lancashire to accelerate the delivery of low-carbon homes.

A separate question by the opposition Labour group will also seek an update on progress on a pledge made by County Hall almost two years ago for its internal scrutiny committee to review the council’s own operations to see how they can be made carbon neutral by 2030.