South Gloucestershire Liberal Democrats have welcomed the statement by the authority’s majority Conservative group, following pressure from the Opposition Liberal Democrats, that the Council has declared a formal Ecological Emergency.
South Gloucestershire’s neighbouring West of England local authorities of Bath and North East Somerset, North Somerset and Bristol declared Ecological Emergencies earlier in 2020, however Conservative-controlled South Gloucestershire had, until tonight, made no formal statement on the subject.
Following the submission of a motion to tonight’s full council by the Liberal Democrat Group calling for the declaration of an Ecological Emergency, the Conservative group gave notice to the opposition groups of their intention to move an amendment including the phrase: “this council notes that a formal Ecological Emergency has been declared”.
Following this acknowledgement that South Gloucestershire Council has already declared an Ecological Emergency, and the statement by the Leader of the Council during the discussion on Climate Emergency Update Report, that tackling the Ecological Emergency had been fully integrated into tackling the Climate Emergency the Liberal Democrat Group decided it was no longer necessary to move the motion at Council.
Speaking after the meeting, Councillor Adrian Rush, who had been due to move the Liberal Democrat motion, said:
“I welcome the administration’s acknowledgement that, through it’s work on the Climate Emergency, this Council has already declared an Ecological Emergency.
“Declaring an Ecological Emergency is an important step forward. The administration now needs to demonstrate that it takes the Ecological Emergency, which it has acknowledged, seriously.”
- The full text of the motion initially proposed by the Liberal Democrat Group (Motion 7) can be found here: https://council.southglos.gov.uk/documents/s123075/Council%20motions%209%20December%202020.pdf
- The Mayor of Bristol declared an Ecological Emergency in February 2020, Bath and North East Somerset Council declared an Ecological Emergency in July 2020 and, most recently, North Somerset Council declared an Ecological Emergency in November 2020.