Following the appointment of the first cabinet member for the Green New Deal by a UK council this week, today Bristol’s Labour administration published their ambitious vision for a Green New Deal. This would see Bristol become the first council in the UK to back the Green New Deal, following on from being the first local authority in the country to declare a Climate Emergency in 2018.
In announcing the motion, Councillor Kye Dudd (Cabinet Member for the Green New Deal, Energy, and Transport) said:
“The Green New Deal is a national policy to transform the economy and country, investing in new jobs, skills, and new infrastructure. It’s about working with communities, workers, and citizens to collectively tackle the Climate Emergency, by bringing people together.
“As the first council cabinet member for the Green New Deal anywhere in the country, and the lead for our £1 billion City Leap energy transformation programme, I am excited to bring such a transformative idea to Full Council next week.
“Our administration have already invested tens of millions in renewable energy and fighting climate change. While we may not yet have the Labour Government which we so desperately need – we will continue working hard, in power in Bristol.”
Darran McLaughlin, a campaigner/spokesperson for Bristol’s Labour for the Green New Deal group, added:
“I am very happy to have the strong support of the Mayor and Bristol City Council. We began meeting in May and, within four months, have seen every Labour Councillor and MP in Bristol pledge their support for the principles of our policy proposals.
“We are delighted that Marvin is taking on tackling the Climate Emergency within his policy remit, and expanding Councillor Dudd’s responsibilities to include the Green New Deal. We are building strong momentum for the only realistic proposal to address climate collapse, which incorporates social and economic justice, and we are proud to say Bristol is taking the lead and acting where national government is failing to do enough.
“We have also seen the Green New Deal passed as the conference motion by local parties in Bristol West, South, North West and neighbouring Kingswood and Filton & Bradley Stoke.”
Notes to Editor
Councillor Kye Dudd (Cabinet Member for the Green New Deal, Energy, and Transport) will move Labour’s motion for a Green New Deal at Full Council on Tuesday 10 September. The full motion is below.
It is a ‘golden’ motion, which means that it is guaranteed to be debated at the council meeting. It will then be voted on by Bristol’s Mayor and Councillors, amongst whom Labour has held a majority since 2016.
Councillor Dudd was first elected in 2016, representing Central ward. Appointed to the cabinet by Mayor Rees in 2017, taking on waste and energy before being given the transport portfolio and – yesterday – becoming the first council cabinet member for the Green New Deal. He is an official for the Communications Workers Union, working from Royal Mail. Councillor Dudd currently chairs the Bristol branch of his union, the same branch which first got him involved in local and national politics fifteen years ago.
The Green New Deal is a national campaign by local Labour activists, who are seeking for the policy agenda to become official Labour party policy at its national conference next month.
In the US, it has also won the backing of Democratic politicians including Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (NY-14) and Senator Bernie Sanders (VT). Bristol’s Mayor and Labour Group of Councillors have already signed up to the campaign.
LABOUR: GREEN NEW DEAL
Full Council notes:
- The Paris Agreement, which recognises that we must keep global temperature rises below 1.5°C to prevent the worst effects of climate change; said accord’s commitment by national governments to reduce carbon emissions, though by less than the ambitious targets set and brought forward by Bristol’s Labour council – most recently to 2025.
- The draft Local Plan’s commitment to carbon neutral homes and development, together with successive investments by Labour budgets in renewable energy; lower-emissions vehicles for the authority, waste company, and Lord Mayor; progress towards a new recycling and reuse centre at Hartcliffe Way; low-carbon heat networks to tackle fuel poverty; insulating 20,000 council properties; and delivering renewable energy projects.
- The Climate Emergency, which Bristol institutions have been the first in the country to declare and which Mayor Marvin Rees led 435 UK councils to declare via the Local Government Association; the climate protests sweeping this country including the youth strikes for climate and Extinction Rebellion and the increasingly widespread calls for a transformative Green New Deal to tackle the challenges that face us.
- The radical carbon neutrality action plan, the Mayor’s speech on Clean Air Day, Bus Deal negotiations, the £1 billion City Leap energy transformation programme, progressing plans for an underground/overground mass transit system, introduction of carbon budgeting, and establishment of the One City Environment Board, advised by the expert Advisory Group on Climate Change; and the data set out within July’s action plan, which shows that the city’s consumption and imports make up ten times the emissions of aviation and shipping, and twice as much as electricity, gas, and transport.
- The shadow Chancellor’s plans to bring forward the Government’s net-zero emissions target from 2050, invest £250 billion in a National Transformation Fund, ensure 60% of energy is from low or zero carbon sources by 2030, and raise research and development spending to 3% by of Gross Domestic Product by 2030.
Full Council believes:
- As set out repeatedly by the Labour administration, social and environmental justice must go hand-in-hand – especially given the poorest suffer first and most from climate change and that the richest have carbon footprints four times larger than those of the poorest; and that cities have an increasingly crucial role in delivering on both fronts, as set out in the Global Parliament of Mayors’ Bristol Declaration of 2018.
- In the work being done by this council with partners to locally implement the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (UN SDGs), which recognise the interdependence of the Climate Emergency with simultaneous crises including poverty, housing, and health.
- Deregulation and cuts to support for renewable energy by the Government have discouraged corporations away from reducing their dependence on dwindling and damaging fossil fuels.
- A state-led green industrial revolution of investment, regulation, and partnerships would decarbonise and transform our economy, and limit global average temperature rises below 1.5°C.
- Bristol’s world-famous aerospace sector, the birthplace of Concorde, should be at the forefront of decarbonising the aviation industry – increasing fuel efficiency advances and further accelerating the development of hybrid/electric planes.
Full Council resolves:
- To restate the urgency of the Climate Emergency, and welcome declarations from the LGA and the West of England Combined Authority.
- To back the One City Plan, aligned with the UN’s SDGs, and to work towards delivering the Green New Deal locally where possible, as below.
- To request that Party Group Leaders write to their respective national party leaders for their support with national legislation, regulation, and investment to enable the accelerated delivery of the Friends of the Earth asks and projects set out in ‘Notes 4’ together with the following local and national pledges which we would like to work towards and deliver:
– a commitment to zero carbon emissions by 2030;
– the rapid phase-out of all fossil fuels and a low-carbon transport integrated network for Bristol and the region;
– large scale investment in renewables;
– a just transition to well-paid, unionised, green jobs available for all, with skills (re-)training and support for the jobs of the present and future, together with workers’ cooperatives and mutuals;
– a green industrial revolution expanding active workers’ engagement, representation and consultation and public, democratic ownership as far as necessary for the transformation, green public integrated transport that connects Britain;
– support developing countries’ climate transitions by increasing transfers of finance, technology, and capacity;
– assuring empowered communities and everyone’s basic rights through the provision of universal services;
– and welcoming climate refugees while taking measures against the displacement of peoples from their home cities and countries and how that further compounds political and social instability.