At the recent Somerset West & Taunton Full Council meeting (29th September 2020) the motion to declare an ecological emergency was carried unanimously.
In a joint-effort between the Liberal Democrats and the Green Party, the motion was proposed by Dave Mansell (Green) and seconded by Dixie Darch, Liberal Democrat councillor for Staplegrove, Kingston and Norton; the motion acknowledges the crisis of biodiversity loss alongside that of climate change and sets out a set of recommendations to maximise nature restoration. The joint-effort between the Lib Dems and the Green party was a repeat of the last year's declaration of a Climate Emergency in Somerset West & Taunton.
Cllr Darch said, “I have always believed that the planet is more important than party politics and I am pleased that this is a cross-party initiative, supported by all. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by climate change given it is a global issue. The same could be said for the ecological crisis, but there is clear evidence that smaller local actions to encourage ecological restoration can make dramatic impact on biodiversity. SW&T is already doing great work on this and I am excited that our Climate Neutrality and Resilience Action Plan will come to Scrutiny and next Full Council. This motion ensures we make our policy and actions around ecological impacts explicit so they are firmly embedded, just as Climate change is. It will push us to do more. I think the lockdown this worryingly warm spring made all of us appreciate the natural world in a profoundly different way, recognising its fragility and importance."