Last month, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change issued a stark reminder of the impact of climate change.
The group of leading climate experts called for global action, warning that climate change is already affecting every region across the globe. Without urgent action to limit warming, heatwaves, heavy precipitation, droughts, and loss of Arctic sea ice, snow cover and permafrost will all increase, they said.
Nine out of 10 councils have declared a climate emergency, and councils are working hard to support local action, particularly in the run-up to the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26) in Glasgow in November.
Ahead of COP26, the LGA continues to stress that net zero can only be achieved if decarbonisation happens in every place, community and household. Providing councils with long-term funding would mean they can plan activity that meets the needs of their local communities.
Through our ‘Pass the planet’ campaign (www.local.gov.uk/pass-the-planet), we are promoting good practice and sharing innovative solutions that councils can scale up or replicate. Please continue to send case studies of your work to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Meanwhile, we are all saddened to see the tragic scenes from Afghanistan. Councils have a proud history of supporting efforts to protect and support refugees, and stand ready to work with government to design any new resettlement scheme, to ensure new arrivals get the support they need and that ongoing pressures from existing schemes are considered.
My thoughts are also with everyone affected following the tragic incident in Keyham, Plymouth. As the initial emergency response winds down, it will be the council team and councillors at Plymouth City Council helping the community to recover from this shocking event.
Finally, you may have heard of the shocking stabbing of a Haringey social worker last month, while carrying out a welfare check on children.
These incidents, although they are thankfully rare, remind us of the many dangers that council staff face on a daily basis, and the important role councils play in communities across the country.