Have your say on tackling Somerset’s Climate Emergency

Online surveys are giving Somerset residents the chance to comment on and help shape a Climate Emergency Strategy for the county.

Launched today (6 Jan), one survey closes on 25 February 2020 and can be accessed here https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/Somerset-Climate-Change-Survey-2019 In addition, an survey for 11 to 18-year-olds can be completed by going to www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/Somerset-Climate-Change-Survey-2019-Young-People and is open until 18 February.

To complement the surveys, a series of drop-in events will give people the opportunity to get involved and find out how the five councils in Somerset are working together on their approach to the climate emergency and how they aim to reduce carbon emissions by 2030.

There will be a family craft area at each event run by local artists and a ‘pop up café’ with talks from guest speakers on topics linked to protecting the environment. Open to residents, businesses, groups and anyone with an interest in what can be done or is being done to combat the impacts of Climate Change in Somerset, the drop-ins will be a chance to discuss the emerging thinking from the five councils as set out in a ‘framework’ document.

The ‘Have your say’ drop-ins start on Saturday 18 January 2020 at Taunton Library and will take place in each District Council area in January and February 2020.  They are being run by the Somerset Climate Action Network (SCAN) on behalf of Somerset’s four District Councils and the County Council.

Earlier this year, all five councils declared or recognised ‘climate emergencies’, agreeing to work together to produce a joint Climate Emergency Strategy. The strategy will identify ways Somerset might work together towards being carbon neutral by 2030 and adapt to predicted climate change impacts. But before the strategy can be drawn up, the councils need people in Somerset to have their say.

Councillor David Hall, Cabinet Member for Economy and Inward Investment at Somerset County Council said: “I would urge everyone in Somerset to get involved and tell us what they think about this critical issue by taking part in our Climate Emergency drop events and completing the online survey. There is also a version of the online survey that has been designed for children under the age of 18, so everyone can have their say.

“We will be seeking feedback on whether the work so far focuses on the right areas, covers everything it should and whether there are actions that communities could take or are already taking forward themselves.

“The information gathered from all our citizens, communities, businesses and interest groups will inform how we shape our plans for reducing carbon emissions going forward and the steps we take to work towards a Somerset that is resilient to the impacts of Climate Change.”

The events will be held on Saturdays, between 10am and 4pm at the following venues:

  • 18 January, Somerset West and Taunton. The Glassbox, Taunton Library, Paul Street, TA1 3XZ.
  • 8 February, Sedgemoor District Council. The Sedgemoor Room, Bridgwater House, King Square, Bridgwater, TA6 3AR.
  • 15 February, Mendip District Council. The Council Chamber, Mendip District Council Offices, Cannards Grave Road, Shepton Mallet, BA4 5BT.
  • 22 February, South Somerset District Council. Vicarage Street Methodist Church, Vicarage Street, Yeovil, BA20 1JB.

More information can be found at www.somerset.gov.uk/climateemergency