Many areas around the UK are leading the way by declaring a Climate Emergency in order to establish a clear way forward towards becoming carbon neutral and dealing with the effects of climate change.
Lincolnshire does not yet appear to be listening to the increasing clamour that we must start doing something now – the longer we ignore the issues the worse the impact on Lincolnshire will be.
- We have had our schoolchildren on strike to raise the issues – have we listened?
- Many of us have watched the stark realities set out in David Attenborough’s Climate Change: The Facts – have we listened?
- We’ve seen passion about the issues from Extinction Rebellion…
- We’ve had to be lectured by Greta Thunberg because of a lack of leadership by our own politicians…
The UK Parliament as a body has declare a Climate Emergency but our government has been too weak to support it, too weak to admit to past inadequacies and inaction (amongst many colours of government).
Some councils are showing leadership – Durham County Council has declared a Climate Emergency in order to help it shape its plans to reduce emissions by 60% before 2030 and making the county carbon neutral by 2050.
What are we going to do in Lincolnshire? As individuals and businesses we are saying we are more aware of the issues yet we have one of the higher emissions rates per capita of the Country (Source: Lincolnshire County Council).
Yes, it is true that there are many initiatives and actions that are working in the right direction, such as the Smart Energy Greater Lincolnshire Project which funds projects to reduce energy usage… this is great but just offers a start. Electricity prices will reach 30p per kWh within 5 years and this may force many businesses and homeowners to rethink how much electricity they buy.
However we lack a comprehensive strategy and leadership on the issue.
Lincolnshire, as a coastal county and one with many low lying areas, is undoubtedly going to suffer from the impacts of rising sea levels and this isn’t something that will just affect distant great and great great grandchildren – this is something that will affect our own children.
In David Attenborough’s words, ‘there is still time now if we act with determination and urgency’ – that means halving emissions by 2030 and reducing them to nil by 2050.
So what should and can we do in Lincolnshire today?
I am calling for the County and all District Councils, along with the Greater Lincolnshire LEP to declare a Climate Emergency and to prepare plans on how we must reduce carbon emissions…
…but it can’t be all down to political leadership…
As businesses and individuals we can all do something, however small – we can reduce our journeys – we can switch our electricity usage to suppliers that provide electricity from renewable sources – we can recycle and use less plastics and packaging.
Let’s show some leadership on these issues in Lincolnshire and put pressure on business leaders and politicians to take action.
If you feel that these issues are important to you please sign this petition on the UK Petitions website here.
Richard Jones is the Managing Director of EV Camel, based in Grimblethorpe, Louth.