Hampshire County Council is debating a “Climate Emergency” motion today (Friday 17th May 2019), and one is being considered for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council. We suggested at the 23rd April hustings that concrete targets for such a motion should include:
- The Council switches all its energy use to renewables by 1st January 2020, ie the council only buys the gas and electricity it uses from renewable suppliers;
- The Council stops buying any more petrol or diesel fuelled vehicles from 14th May 2019 and, as leases run out and vehicles are replaced, they are replaced by electric or other low carbon (e.g. hydrogen) vehicles;
- The Council from 1st January 2020 assesses the impact on air quality across the borough of every planning decision it takes;
- From 1st January 2020 no building in the borough is given planning permission unless the building meets the highest standards of sustainability e.g. code for suitable homes level 6 for domestic properties and BREEAM Excellent for commercial buildings;
- The Council re-invests some (e.g. £10 million) of the £151 million it has in “bank accounts” earning less than 2% interest into renewable energy projects earning a return in excess of 5%.