Greater Manchester mayor Andy Burnham has revealed that a landmark summit will take place in the city in spring 2018, led by ‘some of the brightest environmental minds in the UK’.
Making the announcement on 18 September, the mayor outlined his ambition to make Greater Manchester one of the leading green cities in Europe.
“I want to bring people together to debate if we are doing enough on climate change. By building a low-carbon economy in Greater Manchester, we will put ourselves in a strong position to attract more jobs and investment”, he said.
“Greater Manchester absolutely has the knowledge, radical thinking and resources to deliver on this; we’ve a wealth of academic research and practical know-how to tackle this issue head on, if we put our minds to it.”
Ramping up progress
The city region has existing targets to cut emissions by 48 per cent by 2020 from 1990 levels and reach ‘carbon neutrality’ by 2050, but progress needs to accelerate significantly if these goals are to be met.
The ‘Green Summit’, which will be held on 14 March 2018, will be led by an expert panel to debate plans to achieve carbon neutrality across the region as quickly as possible.
Members of the public and businesses will also be able to contribute views and ideas through an “extensive public engagement process” that will take in energy for homes and workplaces, sustainable travel, air quality, green spaces and low carbon technology.
Cllr Alex Ganotis, leader of Stockport Council and Greater Manchester lead for environmental issues and climate change, described the project as “revolutionary”.
“This will take Greater Manchester to a different level that will rival green cities across the world and make the region much more appealing to prospective investors, doing wonders for the environment and the economy.
“It is very exciting to be working with a panel of experts who will be involved in the public debate to learn the thoughts of both businesses and residents in the region.”