To consider the report of the Director of Resources presenting the Climate Emergency Annual Report which provides an update on the progress being made at both a Council and a city level towards the target set by the Council when declaring a climate emergency in 2019 of achieving net zero emissions for the city by 2030. The report also reflects on wider changes relevant to the city’s decarbonisation that have happened both regionally and nationally.
The Director of Resources submitted a report which presented the Council’s Climate Emergency Annual Report for Members’ consideration. The Annual Report provided an update on the progress being made at both a Council and a citywide level towards the target set by the Council when declaring a Climate Emergency in 2019 of achieving net zero emissions for the city by 2030. The report also reflected upon wider changes relevant to the city’s decarbonisation that have occurred both regionally and nationally.
In presenting the report, the Executive Member provided an overview of the key areas of work which had been undertaken over the past year in response to the Climate Emergency and in progressing towards the target of achieving net zero emissions for the city by 2030. In doing so, it was highlighted that in 2022 Leeds City Council had been recognised as one of 122 city authorities across the world leading the way on climate action by the Carbon Disclosure Project. In conclusion, the Executive Member, on behalf of the Board extended her thanks to the Sustainable Energy and Air Quality team for the progress that was being made in this area, and also to the Environment, Housing and Communities Scrutiny Board for the role it continued to play.
In response to a comment, the Board received further information on and discussed the compatibility between the planning system and the Council’s net zero emissions target. Members also considered the funding which had been secured by the Council from Government to date and the process by which such funding was secured, whilst the Board also discussed the progress being made both as a Council and as a city towards the Council’s 2030 net zero emissions target.
Specifically in response to an enquiry relating to transport contributing around a third of the city’s emissions, it was confirmed that the emissions from Leeds Bradford Airport were not included within that, which it was noted was consistent with the Government’s approach to such matters.
Responding to a Member’s concerns regarding the statistics presented in the submitted report and the rate of progress being made across the Council’s directorates towards achieving net zero emissions, it was undertaken that such matters would be followed up with the Member in question in order to gain further detail.
(a) That the Net Zero Housing Plan for the Council, as presented at Appendix 1 to the submitted report, be adopted;
(b) That the consultation responses regarding the Leeds Food Strategy, as detailed within Appendix 2 to the submitted report, be noted; and that approval be given to the adoption of the updated Leeds Food Strategy, as presented at Appendix 3 to the submitted report;
(c) That approval be given for Leeds City Council to be a signatory of the Yorkshire and Humber Climate Commission’s ‘Climate Action Pledge’;
(d) That the next Climate Emergency Annual Report to Executive Board be submitted in September 2024 (and every 12 months thereafter), in order to improve transparency by aligning the Annual Report with the Council’s Carbon Disclosure Project submission.
(Under the provisions of Council Procedure Rule 16.5, Councillor Golton required it to be recorded that he abstained from voting on the decisions referred to within this minute)