It’s happening. It’s finally really happening. After months – no, years – of false starts and broken promises, the cogs and wheels of Manchester City Council are beginning to turn for climate change.
Five top politicians meet regularly as the Executive Members’ Climate Change Sub-group (see page 2). The new Director of Environmental Strategy, Richard Sharland, has hit the ground running. Top council bureaucrats meet across their turf boundaries as the “Environmental Strategy Programme Board.” Chairs are being appointed to the five writing groups for the Climate Change Action Plan (more on this on the MCFly blog asap). And an Advisory Panel of volunteer trouble-makers throws in ideas and energy and keeps tabs on everyone else. But even more encouraging than this, “ordinary people” are getting involved in the “Living C02mmunities” project, businesses are signing up to words (and perhaps actions?! – see page 2) and, finally, the “Call to Real Action” group is gearing up for a vital twelve months.
It doesn’t matter so much how many people get on a bus to London or a train to Copenhagen in December. It doesn’t matter so much how big this or that camp or protest is. It matters (so much it matters) that the Council finds serious, radical and determined support and pressure every step it takes between now and… well, 2020 and beyond.
The writing and execution of the Action Plan is a massive undertaking in a ridiculously short timeframe. It’s not that this thing can be done. It’s more that it must be done. Let’s go to work.