The Strategy and Resources committee of Stroud District Council have approved the inclusion of £60,000 in the 2019/20 budget to begin work to achieve a Carbon Neutral District by 2030 (1)
Green Cllr Simon Pickering, Chair of the Environment Committee, applauded the unanimous support from all political parties and said “We now need to move from words to action: the council can’t do this on its own, and will need the support of citizens, organisations and business to take focussed, purposeful actions to achieve the Carbon Neutral 2030 Commitment.” (2)
Cllr Martin Whiteside, Leader of the Green Councillors, said “This decision ensures not only that funds are immediately available to start work, but also identifies funding for further work on climate change in the coming years. Stroud will play a leadership role with our community, public and business partners to deliver on this commitment. It is not going to be easy but it will create great opportunities and the potential for significant benefits in the health and future security of our communities and planet.”
The full Council will consider the budget at their January 24 meeting.
(1) The Strategy and Resources committee budget recommendations can be found here; the relevant sections are reproduced below:
3.16 An allocation of £60k has been included to scope out future work, and carry out some initial actions, within the district aimed at reducing carbon emissions. A motion from Environment Committee on December 13th 2018 asked Strategy and Resources Committee “to consider setting aside funds via the normal budgeting process in order to fund the scoping and delivery of the Stroud Carbon Neutral 2030 Commitment”. This allocation represents a commitment to deliver on that motion and will allow the Council to consider how it can best work across the community to deliver our environmental commitments. Where any initial spend occurs during the 2018/19 year this will be funded from reserves which will be restored with a portion of the £60k in 2019/20.
3.17 The outcomes of the scoping work may include identification of external funding sources and will allow the Council to prepare a business case to support any future budget allocations towards this priority. Where the scoping work identifies work to be carried out in 2019/20 there are reserves available to fund projects, including the Business Rates Pilot reserve, subject to the approval of Strategy and Resources Committee. Future budget setting processes will also consider allocations of further additional money in later years.
(2) Details of the Carbon Neutral 2030 Commitment can be found here.