Agenda item

Climate Emergency and Air Quality

To receive the report of Chief Officer, Sustainable Energy and Air Quality which provides an overview of the presentation that will be given to the Community Committee, to provide background on the Climate Emergency and on-going work on air quality.


(Report attached)


The Community Committee received a presentation which provided background on the Climate Emergency and on-going work on air quality.


Members were informed of the following points:

·  In March 2019 the Council declared a Climate Emergency with the target to work towards net zero by 2030 for the whole city;

·  As part of the climate emergency the Council has committed to undertake a city conversation to include residents, public sector, businesses;

·  The team have attended community events;

·  There had been a 15% response rate to the questionnaire from this area which is the highest in Leeds;

·  Alongside climate change the Council is also focusing on increasing biodiversity across the city with planting schemes, and a more relaxed approach to mowing to encourage nature;

·  Introduction of the Clean Air Zone to improve the air quality through a number of measures including anti-idling campaign, roll out of charge points, changes in the council fleet vehicles to a more green fleet. It was noted that the Council currently have a large fleet of electric vehicles with more due for 2020;

·  Promotion of traffic free days;

·  To avoid dangerous climate change we need to ensure that we stop global warming and keep temperatures below 1.5°C if we carry on at our current rate we would use our total budget for a period up to 2050 within 9 years;

·  There has been a 70% decline in insects;

·  There is a toolkit to explain how individuals can help and make a difference;

·  5 Main themes were listed as:

o  Homes – including energy efficiency, LED lightbulbs, efficient appliances, insulation;

o  Food – including how food is produced, processed, moved, bought and wasted;

o  Stuff – including how we buy and select clothes and how we could repair and reuse clothes;

o  Biodiversity – including tree cover, flowering plants, less mowing, encourage insects

o  Travel – including use more public transport, charging points, change to electric cars.


The Committee Community discussed the following points:

·  Electric cars including the benefits and the costs;

·  Air quality at the junction at the top of Pool Bank;

·  Anti-idling in areas of the outer north west particularly outside schools, Councillors welcomed the suggestion of banners to be placed near all schools in the area and suggested that they are also placed at busy junctions;

·  Welcomed the suggestion of more tree planting on the area;

·  The success of the car free day in Otley and that there should be more in the city;

·  Need for all departments to work together especially Parks and Countryside and Planning;

·  Benefits of walking for health and climate change;

·  Need to engage with older people by visiting sheltered housing;

·  Use of social media to communicate with the communities;

·  The need to engage with schools in the area by speaking to head teachers to encourage work within schools and engage children;

·  More transport hubs to increase choice and use of public transport;

·  Airport expansion in relation to air quality.


The Climate Emergency Team were invited to attend a workshop of the Environment and Community Safety Sub Group date to be confirmed by the Environment and Community Safety Champion.



·  Receive the presentation and to offer any feedback;

·  Provide feedback on the best way to engage with the local community, including potential to link to the youth summit;

·  Highlight any locations in the area where there is scope to increase biodiversity;

·  Highlight any areas where idling is an issue and where the promotional banners could be used to best effect;

·  Identify any schools that may be interested in hosting car free days;

·  Identify any areas that may be interested in participating in a rolling programme of car free days in 2020.



Supporting documents: