Saturday, 17 April 2021

Now council declares ecological emergency

Now council declares ecological emergency

AN ecological emergency has been declared by South Oxfordshire District Council.

It passed a motion presented by Sam Casey-Rerhaye, who chairs its climate and ecological emergencies advisory committee. It means the council will aim to protect and restore the natural world, which is a priority in its corporate plan.

Councillor Casey-Rerhaye said: “The covid-19 pandemic has highlighted the relationship between people and nature. When we destroy and degrade habitats, we increase the risk of disease spill-over from wildlife to people.

“We are seeing more and more tangibly how ecological issues are impacting nature and wildlife and making the climate crisis even worse. We are already experiencing how this leads to extreme weather and has a detrimental effect on food production and so many other issues that ultimately endanger our lives and wellbeing and the world around us.”

The council declared a climate emergency in 2019 and later pledged to become a carbon neutral council by 2025 and a carbon neutral district by 2030.

Now it will consider forming a biodiversity steering group to link climate action and ecological initiatives with all its responsibilities.

It will also develop a tree planting policy, which will involve appointing “tree champions”.

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