Will Wealden declare a Climate Emergency - reducing greenhouse emissions to zero by 2030?

20 July 2019

The impact of climate change and loss of nature is one of Wealden residents’ biggest concerns. We can’t avoid it: unless we take urgent action now, we’re heading for disaster. 

Across the UK, councils are declaring a climate and ecological emergency. They are taking urgent, practical, positive action to reduce our carbon emissions and protect our increasingly vulnerable environment. 

Will Wealden District Council join them? 

Global heating is already having an effect here in Wealden, and it will get worse if we don’t take significant action, fast. Already forest fires, floods and droughts are more frequent and more severe across the UK. We are losing plants and animals more rapidly than ever before. Our precious countryside is in danger. 

On Wednesday 24 July, Wealden District Council votes on whether to declare a climate emergency. The debate was ensured by Green councillors, Patricia Patterson-Vanegas and Keith Obbard, and if you want the council to take the action we need to prevent climate and ecological crisis, come along to show all 45 councillors how strongly you feel – you could make all the difference.

Come and tell Wealden what you think 

Where? Hailsham Council Offices, Vicarage Lane, Hailsham, BN27 2AX. 

When? Wednesday 24 July, 2019, from 9.00am to 1.00pm. 

Who? Anyone who cares about our environment, our world and our future. 

2050 is too late! We propose 2030  

The cabinet of Wealden District Council proposes aiming to make Wealden greenhouse neutral by 2050. But this is far too late: the United Nations International Panel on Climate Change has made it clear that we must reduce greenhouse emissions to zero much faster if we are to limit global heating to less than 1.5°C – this is essential to prevent irreversible and devastating change to our world as we know it, here in Wealden and worldwide. 

Patricia has proposed an amendment to the cabinet’s proposal that commits Wealden DC to a target of 2030. 

She says, “Wealden District Council needs to take action now, and not wait until it is too late, when our residents and farms might suffer from more severe flooding, and increased droughts that could threaten our food security”. 

Ecological protection is vital too 

We are losing plants and animals fast – here in Wealden as well as around the world. We could lose all our hedgehogs by 2025, and already 47 plant species have become extinct across Sussex according to the Sussex Botanical Society. Keith has proposed an amendment that ensures that Wealden’s declaration includes this ecological dimension.  

Practical action 

Your Green Councillors, Keith and Patricia, are preparing a list of the actions the council can take following the declaration. They are creating a proposal of effective actions that will reduce carbon emissions, protect our ecology, and build Wealden’s resilience. We are hopeful and excited at the prospect of making positive changes that will benefit everyone who lives here, create business opportunities, and improve all our quality of life.

We’ll share our proposals once Patricia and Keith have created their report for the council.

Find out why this is so vital

Read the United Nations IPCC report