Climate and Politics

Kelvin writes:

"To say that I was angry was a bit of an understatement.
Kelvin Clayton

In advance of April’s full meeting of Dorset Council, Councillor Maria Roe (the LibDem spokesperson on climate) and myself submitted a motion calling upon the Council to support the Climate and Ecology Bill which was (and still is) waiting for its Second Reading in Parliament, and (more importantly) to write to our local MPs asking them to support the Bill.

This Bill would (amongst other things) require the Prime Minister to achieve certain climate and ecological objectives, give the Secretary of State a duty to create and implement a strategy to achieve those objectives, and give duties to the Committee on Climate Change regarding the objectives and strategy. This Bill is, in my opinion, essential background legislation for the successful implementation of Dorset Council’s own Climate and Ecological Strategy.

However, Cllr Roe and myself were informed that our motion was not considered suitable for debate. The reason we were given was that it was not “about a topic or issue related to the responsibilities of the Full Council [nor] does it directly affect the Council or the District”.

The best I can say in response is simply repeat the words of Cllr Ray Bryan, the cabinet member responsible for the Council’s Climate and Ecological Strategy: “Dorset Council as an organisation is only responsible for 1% of the county’s carbon emissions and has limited powers to affect the remaining 99% without huge changes to national legislation by central government.”

Because the success of our Dorset Strategy is so dependent upon these “huge changes to national legislation”, it is surely essential for the citizens of Dorset that this Bill is supported by our MPs. This will not be the last word Dorset Council has on this issue!"


In an interview with Dorset Eye, Kelvin also points to a lack of ambition in Dorset Council's Climate and Ecological Emergency Strategy and urges the Council to take political leadership:



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