“Labour seek to water down climate commitments and continue to punish workers instead” – claim.
The Conservative group on Birmingham city council have criticised the Labour-run administration for “backsliding” on cross-party commitments to tackle climate change as they sought to remove more than 80% of their own carbon target whilst passing extra burdens onto residents who currently have no choice but to use their cars for work.
Cllr Robert Alden (Con, Erdington – pictured) Leader of the Conservative Group said: “101 councillors saw fit to declare this an ‘emergency’ and yet twelve months on, the council is still talking about thinking about what it might plan to do. The Leader, distracted by an Athletes Village that will no longer house athletes, has not given this the priority anyone in this chamber was led to believe he would, or the priority it needs.
“Until their hand was forced by back bench cross party pressure and public activism, this is not an issue the executive has shown any interest in taking seriously, failing to build on ground-work laid by the previous administration on both carbon monitoring and air quality and yet now they are yet again seeking to duck their responsibilities.”
Cllr Ewan Mackey (Con, Sutton Roughley) Deputy Leader of the Conservative Group said: “The Leader of the Council has constantly stated that he does not want the climate response to be built on the backs of the least well off. We entirely agree, yet this is exactly what he is doing by refusing to take action on the council’s own operations whilst charging working people in older vehicles to drive to their place of work.
“The council’s transport plans, whilst dressed up as environmental measures, are increasing congestion and pollution in the poorest areas and taxing the poorest in our society. They have failed to act for eight years and are delaying again whilst asking others to pick up the burden of their failure.”