Sheffield Green Party Councillors have expressed grave disappointment that the Labour Council has rejected its call for the city to work to be carbon-neutral by 2030.
Nearly a score of other councils around the country in recent weeks made that commitment to 2030 (1) , but the Labour councillors, voting as a block, turned down the Green proposal for the 2030 goal, choosing instead to effectively restate the already existing target of 2050.
Cllr Alison Teal said: “I joined the Extinction Rebellion campaigners at their rally before the event, and heard their powerful arguments that we are now in a climate emergency. They were demanding their council meet the clear scientific imperative to act.
“Sheffield is a city with a great radical political tradition, a tradition of technological and social innovation.
“We are behind the cities with which we should be vying for leadership, like Bristol and Brighton, and even trailing far behind Tory-controlled Scarborough and Liberal Democrat-controlled Cornwall.
“The declaration of an emergency today was hollow, without the commitment to act.”
Cllr Martin Phipps said: “Sheffield Labour Council, in failing to take the action our state of emergency demands, is failing the people of our city in multiple ways.
“Cities that invest in public transport, walking and cycling, that ensure warm, affordable-to-heat homes for all, that encourage and support healthy eating for residents, that encourage innovation in renewables and energy efficiency, are going to be the successful, vibrant, healthy cities of the coming decades.
“Inaction and inertia are threatening to leave Sheffield far behind many of the cities we might be expecting to lead. We will not go far at all on hot air.”
- A list of other council commitments can be found here: https://www.campaigncc.org/councils_climate_emergency
- Labour also opposed unanimously a Liberal Democrat proposal for a citizens assembly to inform climate emergency policymaking. Sheffield Green Party councillors supported it.