Professor to lead a new group to help Portsmouth to become a leading light on climate action
The University of Portsmouth and the Students' Union are key partners in a new group that is set to pave the way for Portsmouth to become a leading light on climate action.
The independent Portsmouth Climate Action Board has been set up to bring together individuals, groups and businesses in Portsmouth to take collective action to address climate change. The group was established in response to Portsmouth City Council's declaration of a climate emergency.
It includes influential groups such as Extinction Rebellion and Friends of the Earth, plus local organisations and businesses including the City Council, the Football Club, the international port and Airbus.
The group will focus on drawing up a climate action strategy with a focus on achievable results that make a difference now and into the future for Portsmouth.
Professor Steve Fletcher, Chair of the Portsmouth Climate Action Board and Professor of Ocean Policy and Economy at the University of Portsmouth, said: “Taking action to address the effects of climate change is in everyone’s best interest. The Climate Action Board will work on behalf of all city residents to make our city a leader in climate action, including cutting unnecessary carbon emissions and reducing wasted energy, which will create savings for all of us. We will seek to unlock economic opportunities too, such as encouraging businesses focused on clean technologies into the city.”
The Climate Action Board will work on behalf of all city residents to make our city a leader in climate action, including cutting unnecessary carbon emissions and reducing wasted energy, which will create savings for all of us.
Cllr Dave Ashmore, Portsmouth City Council's Cabinet Member for Environment and Climate Change, said: "Councils can influence investment, submit bids for government schemes and make it possible for local communities and businesses to make more sustainable choices, but the scale and nature of the changes we need to make to avoid the consequences of a rise in global warming mean we need everyone on board.
“The council's aspiration is for the city to be carbon neutral by 2030. Achieving that means changing the way we choose to live, and that needs to be a movement from the ground up.”
The board will receive support from the City Council’s newly appointed climate change officer, Tristan Thorn, who is taking the lead on coordinating the council's efforts to improve in this area.
Anyone interested in receiving news on the council's plans to tackle climate change can sign up to email updates by going to www.portsmouth.gov.uk/climate-change
The board held its first meeting on 19 September 2019 and is in the process of developing a climate action strategy. The first meeting was well attended with representatives from a range of Portsmouth based businesses and organisations.
The next meeting will be held in November and bi-monthly after that.