A CLIMATE emergency was declared by Erewash council last night (Thursday 26 October).
Councillors were told when they met at Long Eaton Town Hall: “The climate crisis is the most existential threat that our communities face, none more so than Erewash.”.
The continuing rise in global temperatures means extreme weather events affecting the UK, such as Storm Babet, are likely to increase.
More needs to be done to reduce carbon emissions at a local and international level.
Cllr Joel Bryan, who is Erewash’s Lead Member for the Environment, referred to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. It has warned that “urgent action is required to tackle climate change to avoid catastrophic long-term environmental impacts”.
The climate and ecological emergency was declared after Cllr Bryan said ahead of the full council meeting:
“The council is facing severe budget pressures amid the economic squeeze but we cannot lose sight of our duty to future generations.
“We have to meet targets for transitioning to net zero. At the same time we are determined that residents are not being hammered to pay for it – so getting more money from the government and finding partners to work with is key.”
He pointed to a recent major refurbishment of Ilkeston’s Toll Bar House, which is a council-owned business hub. The office building now boasts low-carbon technologies including solar panels thanks to Erewash securing £126,000 of government funding.
He also confirmed that the council already buys its electricity from 100 per cent renewable sources such as wind and solar power.
Meanwhile, the most vulnerable households in the borough are benefiting from a council link-up with E.ON Energy Solutions to make their properties more energy efficient. In addition, the council is creating new nature reserves and exploring re-wilding opportunities across the borough to increase natural habitats for wildlife.