Agenda item


To consider Notices of Motion.


Council debated the motion contained in the report by the Director of Law and Governance.


Motion – Net Zero Targets


Councillor Proctor proposed the motion.


Councillor Stark seconded the motion.


Proposed amendment:


This council calls upon the CEO to write to the Prime Minister to express the concern of elected members following his speech on net zero.  Whilst the letter will acknowledge the positive steps outlined in the speech it will also express concern about the apparent rowing back on net zero ambition and call upon the PM to redouble his efforts to:


1) Ensure the UK meets its climate change and environmental obligations as expressed in international treaties.

2) That he ensure that the government provides the ‘clarity, consistency and continuity’ called for in the Mission Zero review to give sectors the confidence to develop green skills and drive change.

3) That the government will ensure that there are sufficient measures in place to support a just transition.


Councillor Swinglehurst proposed the amendment above to the original motion.


Councillor Hurcomb seconded the amendment.


Council debated the proposed amendment. There was division among the membership. It was the contention of some members that the amendment was not sufficiently robust in its messaging to central government. The amendment was supported by other sections of the membership who referred to the challenges posed by current net zero targets including the replacement of gas and oil boilers in rural areas.


The proposed amendment was put to the recorded vote and was lost by a simple majority.


FOR (20): Councillors Baker, Biggs, Bramer, Cole, Cornthwaite, Dave Davies, Foxton, Gandy, Hamblin, Highfield, Hurcomb, Kenyon, Lester, Matthews, Price, Stoddart, Stone, Swinglehurst, Thomas and Robert Williams.


AGAINST (25): Councillors Andrews, Bartlett, Bartrum, Boulter, Carwardine, Chowns, Crockett, Clare Davies, Dykes, Gennard, Harvey, Heathfield, Hitchiner, James, O’Driscoll, Oliver, Owens, Peberdy, Dan Powell, Proctor, Simmons, Stark, Tillett, Toynbee and Woodall.


ABSTAIN (1): Councillor Phillips



Council debated the original motion. There was widespread support for the motion.


An alteration was proposed, as below, to the original motion to include correspondence to the prime minister regarding funding of net zero measures. The alteration was accepted by the proposer and seconded and incorporated into the motion.


The prime minister to ask him to allocate adequate government funding to implement these measures fairly.


The motion as altered above was put to the recorded vote and was carried by a simple majority.


FOR (45): Councillors Andrews, Baker, Bartlett, Bartrum, Biggs, Boulter, Bramer, Carwardine, Chowns, Cole, Cornthwaite, Crockett, Clare Davies, Dave Davies, Dykes, Foxton, Gandy, Gennard, Hamblin, Harvey, Heathfield, Highfield, Hitchiner, Hurcomb, James, Kenyon, Lester, Matthews, O’Driscoll, Oliver, Owens, Peberdy, Phillips, Dan Powell, Proctor, Simmons, Stark, Stoddart, Stone, Swinglehurst, Thomas, Tillett, Toynbee, Robert Williams and Woodall.


AGAINST (1): Councillor Price




Resolved – that:


At its meeting on 28th July 2023 Council unanimously resolved to reaffirm its earlier declaration of a climate and ecological emergency. Underpinning this is our ambitious target to achieve net zero across the County by 2030. To achieve this, Herefordshire Council must work in partnership with local people and businesses, other local authorities and with government.


Since that meeting the UK Government has unexpectedly announced that it will roll back on many key commitments that it had previously made to help move the country along the path to net zero. These commitments are vital to enable all sectors to plan investment effectively and for people, businesses and other organisations in Herefordshire to take the steps we all need to reduce carbon emissions from all activity across the County. More importantly, our commitment to achieving the goal of a zero carbon, nature-rich Herefordshire by 2030 will be undermined.


The government’s weakening of its role in transition is bad for the UK and for Herefordshire and our net zero target. The council, in representing the people of Herefordshire, has a duty to warn the government of the impact of their decision and inviting them to think again.


Council therefore resolves to:


Instruct the Chief Executive to write to:


·       the Secretary of State for Transport to ask him to return to the government’s previous target of ending the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030

·       the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero asking her to return to the previous target of ending the sale of new fossil fuel boilers by 2030

·       the Secretary of State for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities asking him to continue to require landlords to upgrade the energy efficiency of their properties

·       the prime minister to ask him to allocate adequate government funding to implement these measures fairly.



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