Essex Climate Action Commission calls on the county to lead the way in climate change action
Essex could lead the way in the fight against climate change in the UK, according to the chair of the Essex Climate Action Commission.
Commissioners, who met recently to hear from its Land Use working group, discussed their ambitions for Essex to become a leading county in taking climate action.
“Essex could be at the forefront of combating climate change in the UK." ~ Lord Randall, Chairman of Essex Climate Action Commission
Commissioners heard proposals to make 30% of the county a ‘Climate Focus Area’ to lead the way on climate action, accelerating best practice in sustainable land management.
Lord Randall of Uxbridge, the Chairman of the Commission, said: “Essex could be at the forefront of combating climate change in the UK. What we are proposing is very exciting and inspirational. The county of Essex should grab the opportunity to lead the way on climate action with both hands.”
The Commission is calling for green infrastructure in the county’s towns, villages, and new developments to be increased to 30% of the land area. This includes creating new wildlife areas such as woodlands, meadows, marshes, ponds, dunes, saltmarshes and mudflats - places where plant and animal species can thrive and prosper. More green infrastructure can reduce pollution and flooding, whilst also increasing biodiversity. It could also help decrease carbon levels as it absorbs carbon into plants, according to a specialist report on land use discussed during the meeting.
Cllr Simon Walsh, Cabinet Member for Environment & Climate Change Action, said: “I would like to thank all of the commissioners involved in putting forward this vision to make the county a greener place to live, making space for nature to flourish and giving residents increased access to green spaces.”
The Essex Climate Action Commission was set up as part of Essex County Council’s commitment to tackle the climate crisis and become a net zero emissions county.
The full report on Land Use and Green Infrastructure is available online.