Argyll and Bute Council has today established a Climate Change Environmental Action Group to support the ongoing national and international response to climate challenges.
With the issue of climate change causing grave concern around the world, the council recognises that everyone has a duty to take whatever action they can to make a difference.
Argyll and Bute Council has already undertaken work to reduce its carbon footprint and protect the environment, and the area currently has the lowest rate of CO2 emissions per head of population in the UK.
However, recognising the impact of climate change, councillors agreed today to establish the Climate Change Environmental Action Group to advise on policy options and opportunities for strategic projects and activities, and so enhance Argyll and Bute’s contribution to addressing this global issue and delivering the Climate Change (Scotland) Act.
The Group of six councillors will work closely with partners external to the council to explore ways of tackling climate matters that affect everyone.
Leader of Argyll and Bute Council, Councillor Aileen Morton, said: “Living in Argyll and Bute, it can sometimes be difficult to imagine the impact that global warming is having. While we are all aware of increased flooding, and that unusual weather is becoming more usual, we still live in temperate conditions and the climate has had little impact on day-to-day lives.
“However, like all of our constituents we watch the news and hear experts advise that changes they thought were still a decade or more away are happening right now. There are cities across the world who are already having to consider how they manage the safety of citizens as temperatures rise.
“We are fortunate not to be in that position, but as an area of enormous importance in terms of our forests and woodlands we have a duty to act to protect and enhance our existing contribution to carbon neutrality.
“In our area we also need to look to the future as many of our settlements are low lying and in proximity to the coast where any increases in sea levels will have an impact on our communities and economy.
“With young people stepping up and demanding that more be done there is a need to respond to that. The creation of the Action Group is to allow a renewed focus on what more could be done – to create greater political input and oversight into what the council is and could be doing, and create more opportunities to build on the success of work already underway in Argyll and Bute, whether alone or in partnership with other public and private organisations.”
The Climate Change Environmental Action Group will provide an update to the Policy and Resources Committee in December this year, with recommended actions from the group to be reported by August 2020.