Rattery Climate and Environment Emergency

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Rattery Parish Council notes that:

  1. The global scientific consensus is that humans have already caused irreversible
    climate change, the impacts of which are being felt around the world. The Inter-
    governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)  reports that human activities are
    estimated to have already caused 0.8-1.2°Celsius of global warming above pre-
    industrial levels.
  2. To reduce the chance of runaway global warming and limit the effects of
    climate breakdown, it is imperative that we as a species significantly reduce our CO2 (carbon equivalent) emissions to less than 2 tonnes per person per year as soon as possible. Carbon emissions result from both production and consumption.
  3. Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own. Society needs to change its laws, taxation, infrastructure, etc., to make low carbon living easier and the new norm.
  4. Current plans and actions are not enough. The world is on track to overshoot the Paris Agreement’s 1.5°C limit before 2050.(i)
  5. The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, published in November
    2018, describes the enormous harm that a 2°C rise is likely to cause, compared to a 1.5°C. However, limiting global warming to 1.5° C may still be possible with
    ambitious action from national and sub-national authorities, civil society, the private sector, indigenous peoples and local communities.(ii)
  6. Local Councils around the world are responding by declaring a ‘Climate Emergency’ and committing resources to address this emergency.(iii)

Rattery Parish Council believes that:

  1. All governments (national, regional and local) have a duty to limit the negative impacts of climate breakdown. Local governments that recognize this should not wait for their national governments to change their policies. It is important for the residents of this parish and the UK that parishes, towns, cities and counties commit to carbon neutrality as quickly as possible.
  2. Parishes, Towns, Cities and Local Authorities at all tiers are uniquely placed to lead the world in reducing carbon emissions; they are well placed to help decarbonize villages and more remote areas as they have closer links with their residents.(iv)
  3. The consequences of global temperature rising above 1.5°C are so severe that preventing this from happening must be humanity’s number one priority.
  4. Bold climate action can deliver economic benefits in terms of new jobs, economic savings and market opportunities, as well as improved personal, social and environmental well-being for people, locally and worldwide.

Rattery  Parish Council thus:

  1. Declares a ‘Climate and Environment Emergency’;
  2. Aims to encourage and support the community of Rattery to:
    A. become carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account both production and consumption emissions (scope 1, 2, 3 (v))
    B. increase biodiversity;
  3. Calls on Westminster, Devon County Council and South Hams District Council to provide the powers and resources to make the 2030 target possible;
  4. Calls on Westminster to appoint Citizens Assemblies to develop the policies to deliver this target;
  5. Agrees it will work with other local authority organisations such as neighbouring town and parish Councils, DALC (Devon Association of Local Councils) and appropriate government departments (both within the UK and internationally) to determine and implement best practice methods to limit global warming to less than 1.5° C above pre-industrial levels;
  6. Agrees it will continue to work with partners across the district, county and region to deliver this new goal through all relevant strategies and plans;
  7. Agrees it will place this issue on Parish Council agendas to agree strategies and action plans;
  8. Agrees it will report the actions the Council will take to address this emergency within six months.

April 2019


  1. World Resources Institute: https://www.wri.org/blog/2018/10/8-things-you-need-know-about-ipcc-15-c-report
  2. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °s Celsius: https://www.ipcc.ch/report/sr15/
  3. For example Bristol and Manchester City Councils: https://www.businessgreen.com/bg/news/3066475/bristol-andmanchester-unveil-fresh-plans-to-tackle-climate-emergency Also US cities, Berkley: https://www.theclimatemobilization.org/blog/2018/4/25/hoboken-resolves-to-mobilize And the C40 cities: https://www.c40.org/other/deadline
  4. ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, provides many examples of good practice, models and toolkits for Climate Change Adaptation and Urban Resilience: http://iclei-europe.org/topics/climate-change-adaptation-urban-resilience/
  5. Scope 1,2 and 3 of the Greenhouse Gas protocol explained: https://www.carbontrust.com/resources/faqs/services/scope-3-indirect-carbon-emission

  The Climate Emergency - Fact Sheet (PDF file)
Climate Emergency Website
  Climate Emergency Declaration Website
Camapign Against Climate Change Website

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