Monday, 21 August 1989

Environmental Charter for Local Government

Environmental Charter for Local Government - August 1989

National FoE has produced a draft of this document which sets out an agenda for "Green" local authorities. Local authorities have been asked to comment on the draft, and the idea is not to bash local politicians  but to work out how local authorities can implement policies that end, or at least reduce, damage to the environment.

One example would be for council vehicles to use lead free petrol  and catalytic converters to reduce pollution. Another which we are already discussing with Sheffield Council would be for the City to stop using tropical hardwoods from non-sustainable sources in construction and renovation contracts.

If local authorities throughout the country implemented environmental polices, their purchasing power would help accelerate the change towards a greener Britain. Councils use huge quantiles of paper, much more of which should be recycled.

They buy supplies of all kinds of materials and products for schools, council owned housing, libraries and offices. They own land: gardens, parks and farms which could be used to promote nature conservation, and organic growing.

The aim of the Sheffield FoE campaign this Autumn is to explain the opportunities for Sheffield Council and to the public. We want to achieve a greener city. We recognise the City Council's achievements - it is after al l the first Recycling City and we have to acknowledge that sometimes the Council operates within constraints imposed by central government.

However, we hope that Sheffield City Council will accept the challenges of the Environmental Charter wholeheartedly. We will be inviting representatives from the City Council to a public meeting on November 20th to discuss Sheffield's plans to become a Green City.

Rev Bennett.