‘Action needs to be taken now’ says Cambs mayor on climate change measures

Dr Nik Johnson

Dr Nik Johnson, Mayor of the Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority. - Credit: Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Combined Authority

The Mayor of Cambridgeshire and Peterborough is calling for recommendations that aim to mitigate the impact of climate change to be adopted. 

The combined authority’s independent commission on climate has put forward more than 30 suggestions on how to reduce carbon emissions in Cambridgeshire in an interim report on the issue.

Speaking ahead of the authority’s board meeting today (June 30) where the issue will be discussed further, Dr Nik Johnson argues they should be adopted in full not just for the health of the planet but also for the health of the future population.

He said: “The impact of carbon emission across the UK is massive and I’m particularly concerned that emissions here are 25 per cent higher, per person, than the rest of the country.

“We need to act now to reduce this.”

He added: “We are not just fighting for the health of the planet but as a children’s doctor, I understand only too well the impact surroundings can have on people’s lives and wellbeing.

“The health of children and our future children depend on us and the decisions we’re making now. We simply haven’t got the time go on as we are.”

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The Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Independent Commission on Climate was set up by Dr Johnson’s predecessor, James Palmer.

Its interim report was released in March 2021 and calls for the need for investment into mitigating and adapting to climate change in the areas of transport, buildings, energy and peat.

The commission is chaired by Baroness Brown of Cambridge, and drew on the work of experts, public consultation and best practice.

It highlighted that the region’s allowed share of emissions to 2050 could be used within as little as six years if no action at all was taken.

Dr Johnson added the combined authority will provide a central role in helping the region make informed choices in reducing their contribution towards the impact of carbon emissions.

This may be through providing greener public transport, supporting homes to become more energy efficient or helping families out of fuel poverty.

“Action needs to be taken now,” he said.