Surrey County Council signs up to climate initiative, thanks to Green-led Motion

Surrey County Council will sign up to the Local Government Association’s ‘Climate Local’ initiative [1], and will write to the Borough and District Councils within Surrey encouraging them to do likewise, following a successful motion presented by Green County Councillor Jonathan Essex [2].

Speaking in favour of the Motion, Cllr Essex said,

“Investment and action need to be led not just by government but locally. A lot of the power, funding and responsibility needed for leadership already sits with us locally, here in Surrey. 

 “Surely our flood defences should be given greater priority than building another runway. The Met Office shows that climate change is already making the risk of severe winter weather seven times worse. Already around one fifth of our homes are at risk from flooding. While we address the impacts of climate change locally we need to tackle the root causes too.

 “We need to make climate-friendly choices easier for our residents by creating new partnerships for action, with businesses, local councils, housing associations, and others.

 “By showing we are prepared to take the lead here, we can encourage other organisations in Surrey and other UK councils to do more.”


[1] Climate Local is a Local Government Association initiative, supported by the Environment Agency Climate Ready service, to drive, inspire and support council action on climate change. It provides tools and advice to enable Councils both to reduce carbon emissions and to increase resilience to a changing climate.

[2] The Motion, tabled at the Surrey County Council meeting on 8 December 2015, read:  ‘Surrey County Council takes note of the international climate talks currently taking place in Paris and takes this opportunity to reaffirm the importance of its leadership role in this area by committing to sign up to the Local Government Association’s Climate Local initiative, and call on other Councils to do the same.’

It was presented by Green Councillor Jonathan Essex and seconded by Liberal Democrat Councillor Will Forster. It was supported by all councillors, except the UKIP councillors and one Conservative, who abstained.

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