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Petition for councils to declare climate emergency in Norfolk

PUBLISHED: 20:28 10 May 2019 | UPDATED: 20:28 10 May 2019

Youngsters at a protest urging action on climate change. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

Youngsters at a protest urging action on climate change. Picture: SARAH LUCY BROWN

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Climate activists are calling on two Norfolk councils to declare a climate emergency with an online petition.

North Norfolk District Council became the first Norfolk authority to recognise the threat to the environment in March.

But now Climate Hope Action in Norfolk is calling on Norfolk County Council and Norwich City Council to make the same declaration.

The online petition currently has 1,662 signatures and organiser Dr Hayley Pinto said there were another 200 signatures offline.

In the petiton Dr Pinto said: "I'm scared for the future of my children and all our children. Climate change is a real and urgent threat to our health and ultimate survival.

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"In Norfolk we face increasing risks of drought, flooding, coastal erosion, heatwaves, and loss of the Broads, our beaches and the Fens but effective action could improve our health and economy.

"To prevent catastrophic change we must all act. Local councils are best placed to catalyse community-wide action and communicate the urgency of situation. Our local councils are not doing enough."

Norfolk County Council leader Andrew Proctor said: ""We take climate change seriously and our new plan, Together for Norfolk, makes it clear that we want to protect our environment. Councillors of all parties have agreed that we should produce new environmental policies, to be presented to council in November, which will contain specific actions we can take. As well as this my colleague John Fisher has recently had a positive meeting with Extinction Rebellion. I believe that taking specific actions is more important than declaring emergencies."

While a spokesman for Norwich City Council said: "We have been working hard to reduce the council's carbon footprint, and to embed sustainability and resilience into our services. Over the past decade, we have reduced the emissions of the council by 57.1pc, and annual per capita emissions have fallen from 6.9 tonnes of carbon to 3.8 tonnes.

A liveable city is one of the key themes of our City Vision for 2040, which states that we are "committed to shifting to clean energy by 2040 and becoming carbon-neutral by 2050"."

- To view the petition, click here.

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