Delays vs. Delivery: Greater Manchester’s Climate Change Strategy

Delivery of Greater Manchester’s Climate Change plans still on schedule despite three month delay for its approval, insist officials

In July 2011 the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities agreed a Climate Change strategy with ambitious 2020 carbon reduction targets. Officers working under the Environment Commission were tasked with writing an implementation plan to turn those aspirations into reality.That plan, originally due in March of this year, will decide on the priorities for the period between 2012 to 2015 and determine ways to help cut the region’s emissions by 48% by 2020. The plan needed to facilitate the ‘rapid transition to a low carbon economy’ and embed carbon literacy in the region’s organisations, lifestyles and behaviours.

The original deadline for this implementation plan was late March, when it was to be approved by the Greater Manchester Combined Authority & AGMA Executive Board. MCFly can now confirm that the plan won’t be up for final approval until June 29th 2012 – three months later.

Charlie Parker, who leads the Environment Commission’s strategy team of officers, has however insisted that this will not effect the delivery of their plans.

A draft of the plan is intended to be submitted to the Environment Commission meeting on 21st March for consideration. At that time, a decision will be taken as to its state or readiness to be submitted to the GMCA for final approval,” explained Parker.

Subject to that approval, it is anticipated that the Plan will still commence on 1st April 2012 (retrospectively if GMCA approval is after that date) and we therefore intend that there will be no delay in the commencement of its delivery.”

Mark Atherton, the Director of Energy and Environment at the Northwest Regional Development Agency and an Environment Commission support officer, explained that the delay is due in part to staff absences and also to the cancellation of the Environment Commission’s December meeting.

We want to take our time to get the plan right, to make it inclusive and make sure that it means something to those who wrote it,” said Atherton.

Charlie Parker, who is also the the chief executive of Oldham council, added they are making good progress working across the 10 Local Authorities to determine what they are intending to deliver as part of the plan. “We are now in the process of gathering similar information from and holding dialogue with key wider public, private and voluntary sector organisations across Greater Manchester,” he said.

MCFly will, of course, follow this story closely, and hopes to interview Commissioners and officers about the progress of the plan, and – more importantly – the physical actions that arise from it.

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Environment Commission Feb 2012 – for policy wonks only!! (

About arwafreelance

Freelance journalist based in the UK with an interest in the Middle East, environmental issues, Islam-related topics and social issues such as regeneration.
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