Putting short term political gain above Climate and Social justice is quite extraordinary in these times.
The High Common was returned to the people and was not to be commercialised undermining Cllr Paul Crossley. Why the public can’t be asked if they want commercial activity on the High common against the covenants or possibly re-wilded as a nature sculpture park seems strange.
I suspect the council has spent an extraordinary amount getting Tufa Fields through the planning stages for much needed housing in an urban environment on a site with very ecological value (ALL sites have ecological value) undermining Cllr McCabe. Not only does this create a financial black hole in the books, but also now the council will need to build homes outside of the city with a much bigger travel carbon footprint and car dependency.
Joanna Wright was kicked out for refusing to abandon the active travel schemes which are desperately needed to hit Kevin’s Net Zero 2030 target and Cllr Sarah Warren should *know* this as the council has very little control/powers to affect any other carbon sources other than public realm. There’s a reason Grant Shapps wants 50% of all urban journeys to be walked or cycled by 2030. It’s the only way the government can hit Net Zero 2050.
Without delivering the Active Travel Schemes the council can say goodbye to over £6m of future Active Travel England funding. This has been made VERY clear by the Department For Transport. The flagship policy of Liveable Neighbourhoods are just going to be these islands of walking and cycling surrounded by a sea of hostile main roads with no strategic Age 12+ wheeling/cycling routes to centres of employment and education. Kevin should immediately publish the Public Consultation Outcome Report with the the final scheme designs at a later date once the received comments are incorporated.
Kevin has done *everything* the noisy Tory led minority has asked for while destroying any opportunity to hit Net Zero 2050 let alone Net Zero 2030. We voted in a party with a radical green manifesto, not some weak Tory/UKIP climate delay manifesto.
What this shows, more than anything else, is that ONE person understood and took the Climate and Ecological emergency seriously and worked herself to the bone to do what was necessary to leave a legacy we could all be proud of. Joanna Wright. And for that she got kicked out.
In the meantime we’re supposed to “lose a battle to win the war”.
We’re two years into an administration that promised to plant 100,000 trees but hardly any so far, yet is happily re-establishing a green desert on the High Common against it’s covenants, having to build homes not in urban areas forcing car dependancy, and looks like killing off strategically important cycle schemes that directly enable low carbon FREE travel while enabling employers to change parking policies to discourage car use.
Most worrying is that the cabinet member for Climate and Ecological Emergency should *know* all of this. It will be interesting to see if she put in a public consultation comment of support for the Active Travel Schemes. If not why not?
This is pure and simple climate delay tactics to win populist votes and it should have you running scared. We’re not going to hit Net Zero 2050 let alone Net Zero 2030 with this new administration.
It was just before the end of the annual council meeting – held last night via Zoom – that one councillor stole the show and brought the whole ponderous two hours and fifteen minutes of local-government-in-action to life.
Half way through the current administration’s term of office, Bath and North Somerset District Council now has a new leader – and a reshuffled cabinet – but Cllr Joanna Wright was one of those dropped from that inner circle and an impassioned speech during the last dying minutes of this cyber get-together was her amazing parting shot.
Along with Councillor Neil Butters she had been in charge of a transport portfolio looking at everything from resident’s parking zones to liveable neighbourhoods and active travel plans.
She told the assembled Zoom gathering:
‘We’ve delivered on: the JLTP4, the Clean Air Zone, Residents Parking Zones, Emissions Parking…
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