Friday, 4 July 2014

Council strategy for a sustainable future

North Ayrshire Council has vowed to go “above and beyond” in its bid to become a leader in the field of sustainability.

A spokesperson for the Council explained, “The term ‘sustainability’ has often been dismissed as a buzzword, but is actually right at the heart of the way we plan for the future.  The sustainable approach seeks to maximise our environmental, social and economic assets to create the brightest-possible future for North Ayrshire.”

The spokesperson said that over the last few years North Ayrshire Council has “made good progress towards making its services more sustainable,” noting that with the adoption of a comprehensive Environmental Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy, the local authority is “committed to becoming a sector-leading organisation in the area”.

The Strategy outlines how the Council plans to lead the way and inspire a culture-change across North Ayrshire, including by raising awareness of sustainability, supporting clean, affordable renewable energy for all local people, developing a ‘greener’ supply chain, encouraging sustainable transport and local food production, and making the best use of the area’s natural and built assets.

The Council’s ruling SNP Cabinet has agreed to sign up to the ‘Covenant of Mayors’, an organisation made up of local authorities from across Europe who pledge to exceed the target of a 20% reduction in carbon emissions by 2020.

Ardrossan councillor Tony Gurney, SNP Cabinet Member for Environment and Infrastructure, said, “I am delighted we are in a position to agree such a positive, bold and ambitious strategy for a sustainable future.

“Sustainability brings benefits for everyone in North Ayrshire, both now and for future generations.  Some of these are more obvious, such as reducing pollution and energy costs.  Others, such as the stimulation of the local economy through an increase in green sector employment for local people, are no less important.

“We are aiming high and, quite rightly, have genuine ambitions to be leaders in the field of sustainability.  Of course, while the Council has a big part to play in developing a culture of sustainability, we cannot do it alone.  Businesses, industry, partner agencies and the wider community all have a significant role to play in achieving these goals.”

Cllr Gurney noted, “The importance of leading by example should not be underestimated.  By signing-up to the Covenant of Mayors and demonstrating our commitment to sustainability, we are showing a clear vision for everyone in North Ayrshire.”

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