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COP out on insulation!

November 5, 2021 5:58 PM
Dacorum's Environment Committee this week (2nd Nov) witnessed a missed opportunity, even while COP26 is all over our screens.
Insulation by 2030
The Dacorum Borough Council Climate Report - in the context of an emergency DBC Councillors themselves has recognised for 27 months - is desperately lacking on measurable actual Carbon reduction by this Council. The most important part of the report was buried in Appendix 2, point 7. What is Dacorum doing about insulating our social housing? There is an admission that by 2030 only 90% of this key early task will have been done.
Liberal Democrat Environment spokesperson Cllr England called for the Council's own headline approach "Fabric first" to mean something and make urgent progress:
"This plan does not say nearly enough about what will be done in the next five years.
Aiming for only 90% by 2030 on "fabric first" is failure of itself.
And as for not introducing climate-friendly heating until AFTER 2030? There MUST be a commitment to introduce non-fossil-fuel heating where some high-profile larger buildings can be heated to reduce carbon emissions."
The report says it recognises the urgency: "Dacorum Borough Council declared a Climate Emergency in 2019 following the release of the International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) Special Report which announced that we have until 2030 to limit warming to 1.5C or face catastrophic circumstances.
"We surely could have started insulating some of our poorest-insulated housing in 2019/20 and 2020/21? There has been no programme to do so AT ALL. Even worse, a stock condition survey has not yet been done, when it could and should have been started in 2019."
Officers pointed-out that climate-action at scale requires substantial funding by Government, and that many of Dacorum's buildings may need to be rebuilt for the Council to reach net-zero.
Cllr England was willing to recognise the good parts of the report:
"We welcome the Dacorum Climate Action Network, the commitments now coming through in 2022/23 to staffing, the £100k bid to get some EVs. There is a target to reach 63% recycling in 2025, which would be a big step forward, but Lib Dem led Three Rivers have been at this level for years. However, overall the plan does not show delivery."