Residents of Camden Town in London
United Kingdom

Camden Transition Towns have launched the following petition in the face of the need for drastic action to reduce global emissions The recent IPCC report recommends that carbon emissions globally need to reach net zero by 2050, but because many poorer countries will struggle to do this, it further recommended that richer countries should reduce emissions more quickly to compensate. We therefore believe Camden Council needs urgently to declare a Climate Emergency,to reduce net emissions to zero by 2030, and to establish a representative Citizens' Assembly to approve, direct and hold it to these goals.

We the undersigned are petitioning Camden Council because:

1. Humans have already caused irreversible climate change, the impacts of which are being felt around the world. In order limit the effect of global warming to a point where the planet and its lifeforms have a chance of remaining healthy, it is imperative that we keep it below 1.5°C.

2. The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5°C, published in October 2018, describes the enormous harm that a 2°C rise is likely to cause compared to a 1.5°C rise, and told us that limiting global warming to 1.5°C may still be possible with ambitious action from national and local authorities, civil society, the private sector, indigenous peoples and local communities.

But it added that to do this means reducing global net carbon emissions to zero by the middle of the century. And because many poorer countries do not have the resources to do so themselves, in order to have any chance of reaching global net zero carbon emissions by 2050, the world’s wealthier countries and communities have a duty to lead the way and reduce emissions at a faster rate.

3. Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own. Society needs to change its laws, taxation, infrastructure, etc., to make low carbon living easier and the new norm;

4. Camden Council’s current climate plan ends next year, and it is committed to working with residents on its new plan for 2030. Reducing carbon emissions, encouraging a low-consumption and low-carbon lifestyle and providing both education and the means to make this possible will result in a significant benefit to the health and wellbeing of all Camden residents. Working with those residents who express interest and commitment will be likely to bring more of Camden’s population along with any suggested actions.

5 We acknowledge that Camden does not have the powers and funding to meet this target in isolation, and will need to work with regional and national government to achieve net zero carbon emissions. We welcome action by the London Assembly, Bristol City Council and other city councils around the world declaring and committing resources to tackling the Climate Emergency and becoming carbon neutral by 2030, and we call on Camden to follow these examples and work with others to achieve the above goals.

6 Therefore we petition Camden Council to resolve to declare a ‘Climate Emergency’. We call upon it to create a Citizens' Assembly to make and hold Camden to a commitment to carbon neutrality by 2030, and to promote any other possible contributions to sustainability and to healing the planet.
We ask those responsible to report to the Full Council within 6 months with the actions the Council will take to address this emergency, including plans and targets for emissions reductions within the Council’s current control, and plans to lobby other institutions to achieve reductions outside Camden’s direct control.

1. Fossil CO2 & GHG emissions of all world countries, 2017:
2. World Resources Institute: https://www.wri.org/blog/2018/10/8-things-you-need-know-about-ipcc-15-c-report
3. The IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5ºC, pub 6/10/18: : https://www.ipcc.ch/report/sr15/

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The Declare a Climate Emergency in Camden petition to Residents of Camden Town in London was written by Sheila Hayman and is in the category Environment at GoPetition.