Dramatic new figures revealed by the Liberal Democrats show that Harlow is doing better than the country as a whole in keeping down emissions of the gases that cause climate change, but is still emitting 2.7 times as much carbon dioxide as the global average.
As part of the Liberal Democrat campaign for a green tax switch - taxing pollution not people - local Liberal Democrat leader Cllr Chris Millington has published figures showing the carbon emissions per head of population in the town, and how this compares to the national and global averages. Cllr Millington said:
"With a population of nearly 78,000, Harlow is emitting over 519,000 tonnes of carbon each year on the latest official figures. This puts us at 6.7 tonnes of carbon per person per year - 28 per cent less than the UK average of 9.3 tonnes per person, but still far higher than the global average of around 2.5 tonnes per person.
This is a creditable record, but we need to go further to get down to a sustainable level that will stop climate chaos, rising sea levels and storms.
The good news is that the technology is already there to do so by shifting to low carbon cars, saving energy in the home, and cutting down oil and gas at work.
The Green Tax Switch stall run in Harlow town centre last Saturday, and leaflets distributed across the area will be offering practical advice on how to make simple lifestyle changes that will not only help to save the planet, but will also save the people of Harlow money - £1,000 income tax cut for the average Harlow family.
Through simple things like turning down the thermostat, using energy saving light bulbs and not leaving appliances on standby we can all help to save the environment and cut our energy bills. I urge everybody to make at least one commitment to energy saving today.
All the main political parties now agree that we have to tackle climate change, but only the Liberal Democrats have put forward firm plans to help us change our behaviour through tax incentives."