Edinburgh councillors to debate ‘ambitious’ carbon neutral target
The city could commit to becoming carbon neutral by 2037.
Councillors are to consider plans which would commit Edinburgh to becoming a carbon neutral city by 2037.
Members of Edinburgh City Council will debate the proposals, set out in a new report, on Tuesday.
The Sustainability Approach report outlines a three-step delivery plan for the capital to work towards achieving a net zero carbon target by 2030, but with a hard target of meeting this by 2037.
The local authority is currently on course to meet a target to reduce carbon emissions by 42% by 2020.
In the report, it is indicated that if the new proposals are agreed to, the council would work as a matter of urgency with partners to secure a formal agreement, acknowledging the need for a city-wide effort to meet targets.
Last week a number of streets in Edinburgh were closed to traffic between noon and 5pm as part of efforts to reduce pollution.
It is part of an 18-month trial period which will see certain streets closed on the first Sunday of every month.
People are already starting to fill Victoria Street for our first #OpenStreets where streets around the Old Town are closed to motor traffic for the enjoyment of people on foot or bike. Head along between 12 + 5 today! https://t.co/Zr2BPa9eHp pic.twitter.com/sM6UhShXf9— The City of Edinburgh Council (@Edinburgh_CC) May 5, 2019
Edinburgh City Council leader Adam McVey described the proposals as “ambitious but realistic”.
“Cities and towns all over the world are recognising the horrifying scale of the climate change challenge facing us all,” he said.
“We have to act and act fast – and that is why this council and indeed the Scottish Government are not shying away from recognising the state of affairs as a climate emergency.
“We are proposing an ambitious target, to be a zero-carbon capital by 2030 and certainly no later than 2037.
“Our task as a whole council is to work cross-party to tackle this together, along with our partner organisations across the city – we owe it to future generations to get this right.
“It’s a massive and definitely daunting piece of work, so it needs a clear direction of travel if we’re to do this properly.
“I know we can achieve great things if we take an ambitious but realistic approach, and I’m looking forward to some constructive and engaging debate about this at the meeting.”