2 years after a 'Draft' Climate Emergency Action Plan was published, the Climate Emergency Working Party have finally published an update, which was approved and adopted by the Full Council on Monday 13th December. You can read the document here :
The council agreed to 3 recommendations :
To approve and adopt the Climate Emergency Action Plan presented to the meeting
To embed the Climate Emergency Action Plan in the Corporate Plan to ensure ongoing monitoring and oversight
To dissolve the Climate Emergency Working Group
So now it is up to the Cabinet, led by Councillor Phil King to implement the plan and monitor its progress. They will apparently be producing a Detailed Delivery Plan, a Communications Plan and an Annual Report on progress.
Several members of Sustainable Harborough Community(SHC) attended the meeting, and the group was able to table a written query, which asked for details of when these additional plans would be published, and also whether further public consultation would take place when drawing them up. Councillor Bateman, who chaired the Climate Emergency Working Party, gave a written response which did not give specific responses to these specific questions. He assured the meeting that more detailed answers would be presented "in due course". You can read a full transcript of the question tabled by SHC, and the response from Councillor Bateman here:
Whilst it is great news that HDC does now have a Climate Action Plan, SHC remains concerned that the plan as published does not go nearly far enough. In particular :
There is no real vision or sense of urgency in the plan
Apart from the overall commitment to 'reduce its own carbon emissions to net zero, as far as practically possible by 2030' there are no targets and no milestones and very few delivery dates
Most concerning to us, is that the plan does not seem to have moved forward significantly since the Draft Climate Action Plan which was published in 2019. Very little regard seems to have been given to all of the comments and suggestions made by individuals and groups during the consultation period held in the summer.
No dates are given for the publication of the Detailed Delivery Plan, or the Communications Plan and no details about what the annual report will include, and how it will be communicated to the public
SHC will continue to monitor progress and to press the council to do more if we feel it is necessary.