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Cross party support to get tackle our environmental issues in Greater Manchester

Manchester Friends of the Earth welcomes the high-level of cross-party support from candidates for urgent action on key environmental issues facing us locally, nationally and worldwide.

So far, 337 (31%) of the 1088 local candidates have replied and responded to the survey.

* 97% supported the proposal from Andy Burnham, GM Mayor, that Greater Manchester should adopt the Tyndall Centre’s science-based carbon budgets, set targets to half the region’s emissions in the next five years and become carbon neutral by 2038.

* 99% agreed that their local authority should phase-out of single-use plastics by 2020.

* 96% supported their local council allocating funding to implement the walking and cycling (active travel) measures contained in Chris Boardman’s ‘Made to Move’ report.

* 96% supported a ban on the use of neonicotinoid pesticides in their local council area and to work to phase out the use of other pollinator-harming pesticides.

* 88% supported the introduction of a GM-wide building standard for all new developments to be zero-carbon and climate resilient.

* 87% agreed that the Greater Manchester Pension Fund should fully divest from fossil fuels in the next five years.

* 81% would call on their local council to introduce ‘parking exclusion zones’ around local schools at peak times.

* 67% supported the introduction of a cap on emissions from flights to and from Manchester Airport.

Catherine Thomson, Manchester Friends of the Earth co-ordinator said:  “We wouldn’t dream of telling people who way to vote but we think voters have the right to know where candidates stand on key environmental issues that will affect all our lives, such as climate change and air pollution.”

“It is clear that there is widespread support across Greater Manchester and across political parties for the Mayor and local councils to take urgent action to reduce plastic pollution, enable people to walk and cycle more often,  to tackle air pollution and drastically reduce climate change emissions.”
” We would like to thank the candidates who took the time to respond and let voters know their views on these important issues.”
Across Greater Manchester response rates for candidates from each political party ranged from: Green Party 60%, Labour Party 40%, Liberal Democrats 36%, “others” 30%, UKIP 7% and Conservative Party 6%.

Response rates for each local council area ranged from Stockport (40.4%) to Wigan (17%).
On May 3rd, people in Greater Manchester have the opportunity to vote for the local councillors to represent them. The local councillors elected will have to implement solutions to meet the many social and environmental challenges facing us over the next 5 years and beyond. These include rising transport & energy costs, traffic congestion, ill-health and rising obesity levels, poor air quality and the need to drastically reduce CO2 emissions
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