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Thursday, November 12, 2015

Councillor Cockburn, excited over climate change declaration

A momentous 15 minutes in the chamber today, as previously truculent councillors finally smelled the coffee brewing in the pot that is the over-heating climate. Like old sailors grasping the sheets, previously-in-denial sea dogs like Councillors Cockburn and and Hubber enthusiastically backed Chairman Timms quite freely given offer to sign the declaration that seems to mean something quite different to her than it does to me, but never mind, every good councillor voted yes and the pen twirled daintily. The Southland Times article below represents the tidy version of events, and doesn't include the wrangling from me over what signing will mean for the council, but that can wait. For now, some progress has been made :-)

"Environment Southland Council is signing up to a local government declaration on action on climate change with one councillor saying it needs to be in their minds when granting consents.

The motion was carried by the Council on Wednesday for Chairman Ali Timms to sign the Local Government Leaders' Climate Change declaration on behalf of the council.

The declaration calls on councils to acknowledge the importance and urgent need to address climate change and to support the New Zealand Government in developing and implementing an ambitious transition plan towards a low carbon New Zealand.

Last week Auckland's deputy mayor Penny Hulse launched the declaration on behalf of Local Government New Zealand.

Timms said it was initially proposed by metro councils, but support was now sought from mayors and chairs from throughout the country,

Names of councils would be added up until the United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris in December 2015 where the declaration would be presented by Sir Bob Harvey as the sector's special envoy.

This was something local government should be united on and showing leadership, Timms said

Councillor Robert Guyton said he was very pleased that the council was on board and showing support.

"I'm very much in support of that."

Councillor Nicol Horrell said it was putting more pressure on central government to act, while councillor Jan Riddell said it was her hope that all regional councils would sign up to this.

"I think it's important regional councils take the lead."

The council needed to be keeping the declaration in mind when granting consents, Riddell said.

"There is work to be done."

Councillor Maurice Rodway said in the planning area generally council needed to be looking at opportunities to encourage the community to reduce greenhouse gas contributions.

Councillor Ross Cockburn said he was quite excited because council were actually going to be talking about prevention of disasters.

"It's time we got on to that boat," he said."

- Stuff


corokia green said...

Good work Councillor Guyton and colleagues. Another step towards recognising climate change becoming part of the mainstream mindset. There is a long way to go,but it feels to me that more people are 'getting it'.

Back out into the garden, onions to weed, lettuce seedlings to plant, probably completely out of step with the moon calendar, but my garden time is limited so it just gets done when I can get out there.Very pleased with the way phacelia has come up all through the broad beans, looks lovely, lots of beas hanging about and the beans seem to help hold the phacelia upright.
Have just finished my lovage hedge, the plan being to keep the nor-easter off the vege garden in summer. Can't have a permanent hedge there because I want the cold air to roll on down the hill in winter. Ah gardening, much better for the soul than online commenting (though a did a wee one on pundit yesterday)
All the best,

robertguyton said...

Thanks, Viv and yes, all steps in the right direction, however small, are good. Now that we've broken the slumber, we'll be able to 'encourage' those councillors who were somnabulating, to get a trot-along :-)
Lovage is lovely. Par-cel is as nice and difficult to tell apart from lovage, I find. Gardening, I believe, is better for the soul than just about anything and anything is better than commenting on blogs. Still, it amuses us...