Here’s a letter I sent in last Thursday about the Scrutiny Committee meeting on Tuesday 8th. Sadly it hasn’t made it in – but persistence is the name of the game when it comes to letters to the editor…
It was good to read that Greater Manchester councils are bulk-buying electricity and gas to help residents lower their fuel bills (MEN Jan 2nd “People power energy scheme which could save YOU hundreds”). The other side of that coin though, is more energy-efficient houses, with better insulation. This is supposed to be happening via the Coalition Government’s “Green Deal” to encourage retrofitting of domestic properties. However, the Tories and Lib Dems are showing a complete lack of political will. It is time that Manchester’s politicians and civil servants start thinking about a Plan B – how to ensure we help residents have warmer, safer and low-carbon houses without relying on unreliable central Government schemes.
On Tuesday 8 January 2013 the Neighbourhoods Scrutiny Committee of Manchester City Council will discuss a report on the Greater Manchester Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation. The report (available on the Council’s website) is admirably clear. It is also honest in admitting that if the current plan goes through it is “likely to save 3,2450 tonnes of carbon,” (up to 2016) which “pales into insignificance in relation to the 350,000 tonnes savings needed from the domestic sector by 2020.”
Hopefully committee members will ask for work to be done – perhaps by the University of Manchester or the Centre for Local Economic Strategies – to devise a plan for how the city can come up with a scheme that is fit for purpose and relies on the wealth and ingenuity of Greater Manchester.
In addition, the Scrutiny Committee will also discuss a report on the “refresh” of the Manchester Climate Change “Action Plan. The meeting takes place from 2.00 pm, in Committee Room 11, Level 1, Manchester Town Hall. You do not have to book, and you do not need anyone’s permission to attend this meeting. Manchester Climate Monthly will be reporting on the outcomes of this meeting
co-editor Manchester Climate Monthly