Open letter to Neighbourhoods Scrutiny Committee members on #climate “report”

MCFly has been covering the council’s promises (and the breaking of those promises) for many years. The latest dreadful report – to be discussed for a few minutes at a “scrutiny” committee meeting on Tuesday 19th July at 2pm –  is too dreadful to take seriously. One of the many hilarious absences is on culture change, with the May 2016 Manchester Labor Party manifesto of “carbon literacy” for its councillors and the public already seemingly forgotten. There is much much else to say, but frankly, why bother? The Council machine is freaking out about the impliciations of Brexit (see the report here) and has neither the stomach nor the competence to keep even the smallest of its promises.  It’s over.  Carpe the diems, folks.  If carpeing diems for you involves telling our elected representatives to  take climate change seriously, then you go right ahead.  It does for MCFly’s editor, just not at the level it used to…  Below please find a good letter from another Moss Side resident.  Will there be an acknowledgement? Response? Thanks to a citizen for doing the job that the councillors are political unwilling or cognitively unable to do?  Of course not.

Dear Cllrs

These are my concerns regarding the Climate Change Action Plan and Emissions report that is going to the Neighbourhood and Environment scrutiny committee tomorrow, please can you raise them?

Kind Regards,
[Moss Side resident]

1. The report does not mention that in the 3rd Background document listed in the report (MCC Climate Change Delivery Plan 2010-2020) Manchester City Council originally had a target to reduce its emissions bellow the baseline by 20% by 2013/14. This has still not been met, two years later. This is incredibly concerning. Why has this not happened?

2. MACF has 4 stated aims and receives 10’s of thousands of pounds a year from the council. MACF’s second stated aim is to “To engage all individuals, neighbourhoods and organisations in a process of cultural change that embeds low carbon thinking into the lifestyles and operations of the city;” . Why does the “MCC Climate Change Action Plan [sic] 2016/17 to 2019/20 ” drop all references in the plan to culture and Carbon Literacy Training included in previous “plans”?

3. MACF’s 3rd stated aim is to “Prepare for and actively adapt to a rapidly changing climate” . The council’s previous Action Plan [sic] had the action of “Review the impact of the five pilot ward-level environmental audits and establish next steps ” . To prepare ourselves for the horrors to come, localised planning is crucial. What has happened to the “five pilot ward-level environmental audits” – and why have these been removed from the council’s plan, with no report given to the scrutiny committee on these pilot audits?

4. The WWF Timber pledge has just been dropped from the plan, after being in it for the last couple of years, due to ‘budget and technical constraints’. How many other parts of the plan will be dropped by the council due to similar constraints? Why weren’t these other constraints factored in to the plan for the last couple of years for this pledge?

5. The change in energy emissions from buildings has been incredibly erratic. Town Hall Extension / Central Library , New Smithfield Wholesale Market, Sharp Project Media Centre, Wenlock Way Offices, Manchester Art Gallery – have all had really large, sometimes astonishingly large, drops in emissions. Manchester Aquatics Centre, Town Hall, Wythenshawe Forum and Moss Side Leisure Centre are examples of buildings that have had huge increases in emissions. Last year, reasons were given on the report for increases and decreases, it would be useful to have these reasons given this year – particularly as there are so many buildings which have had a dramatic change in emissions.

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About manchesterclimatemonthly

Was print format from 2012 to 13. Now web only. All things climate and resilience in (Greater) Manchester.
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