AHEAD of Thursday’s local elections, Friends of the Earth asked all candidates standing in Fareham and Gosport to demonstrate their support for decisive climate action by signing the ABCD Climate Action Pledge.
The environment conservationists sent out more than 120 pledges as part of their campaign, some hand delivered; some sent by mail, and had 21 replies back overall. These responses included those from one Conservative, three Green, two Labour, thirteen Lib Dems, and three Independent candidates.
The pledge asks candidates, if elected, to pledge to press their council to: A ccelerate action, B oost partnerships, C ommunicate and D ivest from fossil fuels.
The campaign is being led by the South East Climate Alliance. SECA is a non-party political coalition of over 100 local environment, faith and community groups across the South East. Set up in 2019, it has been pressing local councils to be more proactive in doing their part to tackle the climate emergency.
The total of pledges for the South East Region was 110, which FoE says is impressive as there were no county elections this year.
By signing the pledge candidates made a “strong public statement” that they wish to be part of the solution to the current climate crisis. Both Fareham and Gosport Borough Councils are working on their Climate Change Strategies, which the campaigners believe need to be at the heart of all local government decisions.
The government has approved a recent IPCC report on climate change. And IPCC Chair Hoesung Lee said: “We are at a crossroads. The decisions we make now can secure a liveable future. We have the tools and know-how required to limit warming.”
Co-Chair Jim Skea added: “It’s now or never, if we want to limit global warming to 1.5°C (2.7°F).
“Without immediate and deep emissions reductions across all sectors, it will be impossible.”
Now Gosport and Fareham Friends of the Earth wants all parties across the political spectrum to act locally and do their part to combat climate change.