Carlisle City council declare Climate Emergency

On Tuesday, Colin Glover, leader of Carlisle City council, and Labour councillor for Currock tabled a motion to declare a Climate Emergency. The motion, which was backed by the Labour party, passed by 29 votes to 22.

Carlisle as a city is no stranger to climate emergencies. The Border city has had 2 “1 in 100 year” floods already in the 21st Century, yet no action had appeared to be taken.

In 2015 Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn called out then Prime Minister David Cameron on making “false promises” and ignoring climate scientists advising him on the scale of the flooding that climate change would cause. Over 3 years on from the floods that devasted Carlisle, adequate flood defences are yet to be produced, and the council decided it was time for action.

However, Carlisle Labour weren’t alone in their bill. They were joined by 6 year-old Emily from neighbouring Brampton, who gave a speech urging councillors to back the motion, and why it is important on both a local and international scale. The speech was a lot more impressive than anything I was doing at that age.

As Part of the motion, the Council aims to have their activities producing net zero carbon by 2030. Carlisle Council are setting a great example by passing this motion, and I firmly believe that all councils, and in extension, parliament, should table bills on making prevention of climate change one of the country’s most important tasks.

The roadblock to such change is the Conservative Party. In this case, the Conservative councillors in Carlisle abstained, as apparently the literal fate of the planet wasn’t important enough to vote on but right wing politicians have been resistant to action that hopes to mitigate climate change.

It wasn’t just Carlisle that declared a climate emergency last night, though. Kingston, a city in Ontario, Canada, also declared a climate emergency, the first of its kind in the Canadian state. Seeing this, partnered with the recent Youth Strikes for Climate, lead by Swedish teen Greta Thunberg, fills me with optimism that as grass roots movements, uniting together, we may just be able to save the planet and all of the life upon it.


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