IN JUNE this year a Hackney Labour motion was overwhelmingly passed at a Council meeting, declaring a climate emergency for Hackney.
That public declaration was a commitment to the residents of Hackney that Hackney Labour would do everything we can as a Labour council to avoid a climate crisis.
As our 2018 Manifesto demonstrated, Hackney Labour was already at the forefront of local government action to address global warming.
Cllr Jon Burke, Cabinet Member for Energy, Waste, Transport and Public Realm, said:
“On single-use plastics alone, we delivered 13 significant achievement in the 13 months following last year’s elections, from eliminating single use plastics from Town Hall catering services and plastic cups from our offices, to hosting the UK’s largest plastic bottle-free running event, avoiding the use of 225,000 bottles in just one day.
“These are just two examples of where Hackney Labour is leading the way on reducing indirect carbon emissions, alongside tackling the borough’s polluted air, sourcing renewable energy, and promoting greater biodiversity through extensive reductions in herbicide use and measures to support nesting birds.
“But, we’re not resting on our laurels.
“That’s why we will be making some big announcements – including a new Low Plastic Zone in Dalston and exciting news about our world-leading water fountain programme.”
The Labour administration is launching the largest drinking water fountain scheme of any local authority in the country! 26 new fountains will grace our libraries, leisure centres, parks, & streets by 2022, bringing the total to 38 in Hackney. news.hackney.gov.uk/over-20-new-wa
The new fountains will be concentrated in the borough’s town centres, parks, & public buildings. The wide distribution of fountains will ensure that, wherever residents are in the borough, they’ll be able to access free drinking water from fountains and bottle refill stations.
13 months, 13 achievements: Hackney Labour’s #WarOnPlastic
- Introduced more water fountains in the borough, five in partnership with the Mayor of London and more public water fountains through our libraries, leisure centres and community halls in development.
- Produced a Sustainable Procurement Strategy to make our procured goods and services delivered more sustainably, and remove superfluous plastics from our council purchasing.
- Removed single-use plastics from our catering contract.
- Developed an estate-based ‘reverse vending’ pilot – rewarding those who reduce, reuse and recycle.
- Removed single-use plastic bottles from the Hackney Half Marathon – now the UKs largest plastic bottle-free running event – averting the use of 225,000 bottles in just one day.
- Pledged to produce a plastics policy in the 2018-2022 term.
- Held the Council’s first zero plastics event with Hackney Sustainability Day 2018.
- Launched our first zero waste hub ─ a free community pop-up for residents to reuse, repair and learn new skills to help grow the circular economy in Hackney.
- Secured a site to develop an object-lending library in the first term.
- Helped launch the Real Nappies Bill ─ a Bill containing an incentive for local authorities across the UK to provide reusable nappy vouchers and more information for parents which has helped Hackney avoid 1,300 tonnes of disposable nappies in the borough and save families up to £1.5 million total.
- Responded to the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee’s inquiry into plastics, and urged the government to introduce the ‘producer pays’ principle in their recycling strategy ─ where producers of single-use plastics pick-up the bill for the waste they cause.
- Eliminated single-use plastics from the Hackney Council Service Centre cafe, avoiding 120,000 items of single-use plastic a year.
- Developed a Hackney Low Plastic Zone where people will be able to obtain a wide-variety of plastic-free goods.