Manchester City Council

Making It Happen

I can remember when, for a period of time, the City Council had this somewhat vacuous phrase as its strapline, selected I believe (not by me!) precisely because of its lack of content.

However, get rid of " it " and replace with for example " CO2 emissions reduction " and suddenly we do have something with real meaning. Ignored all that advice about not travelling unless you have to and went down to London yesterday, to Portcullis House to be precise, that obscenely over budget office block where many of our MPs have their offices. I went for an all-party, MPs and Council Leaders event supporting Friends of the Earth's campaign to get local carbon budgets into the upcoming energy bill. Paul Goggins, MP for Wythenshawe and Sale East, was one of the meetings sponsors. The principal is quite simple. 80% of emissions are generated locally. If government is going to meet its national target on emission reduction every locality in the country needs to have its own target and to be doing everything it can to meet it. It's no good Greater Manchester (and Bristol and West Sussex , the other two Councils highlighted at the meeting) doing their bit if nobody else does. We need a device to make it happen everywhere and local carbon budgets are one of achieving that which is why Manchester is supporting the FoE campaign.

Stayed in London overnight to participate this morning in an LGA conference on Housing and Localism. The question was a simple one - will the new localism deliver the step change needed in new homes, empty homes being brought back into use, and poor quality housing being brought up to scratch. The answer was equally simple - no! Manchester needs new homes of every type for its existing and growing population. Social housing, other affordable housing, student housing, housing for middle income families, executive housing. We need to replace or refurbish much of our oldest stock. We need to re-design many of the estates we built in the sixties, seventies and even early eighties. We need the amenities, schools, parks, libraries, health centres, to support healthy communities. Yes, all of this needs to be locally driven but it also needs major investment.

There are 20 responses to “Making It Happen”

  1. Pedant Says:

    "Making CO2 emissions reduction happen" does not have real meaning I'm afraid, although I do applaud your effort.

  2. franky Says:

    Manchester has great carbon reduction targets, but can we reach them?
    Traffic produces 1/3 of our carbon, and that is largely a national problem

  3. Ian Says:

    I love it two answers both dealing with emissions yet both missing the major factor for Manchester we need more homes and our old stock updated. Tell you what some people save the world while Manchester people live in homes that they can't afford to heat, homes that other european countries would condem.. So lets live in the real world shall we until the euopean union countries and the US are back to making their ecomonies work again no one is going to spend money on things that will effect future generatinons thats the real world. If they had we'd have built a nucleur power station next to every large city in the UK. What is more worrying is were are we going to get the energy from the future needs of a growing population, before everyone holds their hands up in horror wind power waves power would not be fesiable if it was not for the massive public money thrown in to it.

  4. fedup Says:

    Targets, targets, targets.

    1: How much is this little P.R. exercise going to cost the taxpayer?

    2: Why is this even being considered in the first place? The whole thing smacks of 'millenium bug' scare tactics where we spend millions keeping some invisible monster away. You should introduce a special 'Sasquatch' tax and think of a new threat every year.

    Proof of 'climate change' is required before this gets underway.

  5. t matt Says:

    Fedup you need to growup I am afraid, burying your head in the sand. There is plenty of proof of Climate Change. 'Little PR Exercise'! Ridiculous. I hope you do not make important decisions in your day job, that is all I can say.

  6. fedup Says:

    Nice, tmatt. Don't bother linking to any kind of proof - just take an irrelevant knock about 'growing up' (very grown up of you, that) and 'making important decisions in a day job (??)'. I do, actually. I'm now in charge of Sasquatch Tax.

  7. Hmmm Says:

    Quoting Ian, i totally agree that too many people in Manchester live in run down houses or run down estates where there energy bills often cost a lot more than they can afford, and if your unlucky enough to be on a pre payment meter your gonna be in for a very cold winter or your gonna be lacking in the finer things in life that you work hard for all week just to heat a property that is draining energy because it's efficiency in retaining heat is 0, and not only this energy prices do my nut, you have these energy companies picking and choosing prices with little to no regulation, reminds me of fifa but that another topic

  8. t matt Says:

    thanks for your comment fedup. Do you require evidence of Evolution too? Some things are self evident to grwn-ups. We do need some targets surely?

  9. fedup Says:

    It’s a pleasure, and please, don’t call me Shirley.

    As a ‘grown up’, you should be able to question whatever it is that you are told. The fact that you have not only been unable to provide proof, you then make the completely unnecessary comparison to proof of evolution shows that you can’t fully back your argument up.

    Self evident? Because we’ve had a bit of bad weather? Come on, now. Some of the scientists involved in the research of climate change are arguing that it’s the planet going through a ‘cycle’, as it has before.

  10. t matt Says:

    Fedup - think of the children! we need to protect this world and bring in policies to help secure our future, not destroy it. Anyway, Happy Christmas!

  11. Ian Says:

    that it’s the planet going through
    Well said fedup
    a ‘cycle’, as it has before
    It is strange that in the 1640's the world had the coldest winter a mini ice age the Thames froze its a cycle those who want to put the genie back in the box are the very people who gain jobs by it. Lets be real please normal people are having hard times there are 1 million children in the UK that don't always have a hot meal a day. So before you spend taxpayers money on saving the world how about saving the people who live on the world. It is all fine if you live in a nice warm house have warm meals every day you can afford to preach to people. Or even go abroad to warmer climes.

  12. Dave Bishop Says:

    A few years ago the distinguished physicist, Stephen Hawking (who I assume everyone has heard of by now?) applied the standard laws of thermodynamics to the problem of human energy use. He concluded that if we go on using energy at the present rate, by the year 2600 the surface of the Earth will be red hot. He also applied simple mathematical laws to the problem of human population (which is said to double every 40 years). He concluded that by the same year the entire surface of the planet will be covered in people satnding shoulder to shoulder. Now, obviously, these two outcomes are incompatible! But they are dramatic demonstrations of the natural, and unavoidable, limits which our species faces. You might rage against the 'unfairness' of the laws of nature, or even insist they are not relevant - but, in the end, you can't beat them!

  13. Hmmm Says:

    Dave Bishop: Pleaseeeeeeeeeee, did Hawkins take into consideration the number of people who die each year from cancer,aids,Famine,war, random acts of terrorism etc etc, and DRAMATIC being the key word in your statement, the world will undoubtedly die out at some point but thats life, nothing lasts forever enjoy it while you can i believe is a motto lots of people use, and also it is just a cycle of life that happens every few thousand years, the thing with the human race is we think ourselves more important to the earth than we actually are.

  14. Dave Bishop Says:

    The point is, 'Hmmmm' the population is doubling every 40 years IN SPITE of all the deaths from the various causes that you mention. Remember that the 20th century saw unprecedented numbers of people killed in wars - but still the population kept on rising.

  15. Hmmm Says:

    well Dave i have a solution for a few problems, bring back capital punishment!
    will releave prisons of overcrowding, take the strain off the tax payer to keep them incarcerated and also reduce some of the heavily increasing population levels or failing that we could always take a leaf out of China's book and simply slap a cap on reproducing ;)

  16. t matt Says:

    Are you Stephen Hawkin himself, I feel humbled by your presence indeed. Great debate on this blog, bringing people together, just like a 'coalition'.

  17. Dave Bishop Says:

    No, 'Hmmmm' depriving people of their civil rights and/or killing them is not going to work - Hitler, Stalin, Mao etc. tried that and failed abjectly (thank God!). Current thinking suggests that we need to raise existing people's living standards, so that they don't need to have so many children to support them in their old age, and to improve the status of women so that they have more control over how many children they have.
    At the end of the day the world's population is currently increasing remorselessly because, at any one time, there are more people being born than there are people dying. Professor Hawking would have produced his projection by feeding the relevant numbers into the differential equations describing population growth. I'm sure he didn't wake in the night, in a cold sweat, thinking, "Drat! I forgot that people die! I hope that no-one notices!"
    Back in the 19th century Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote a poem which included a line to the effect that for every man that dies another is born (I paraphrase). The computer pioneer, Charles Babbage wrote to him to point out that for every man that dies 1.16 men are born. When one recovers from the truly staggering crassness of that comment(!) he actually had a point because he knew that such a difference would inexorably lead to an increasing population.

  18. Hmmm Says:

    Dave, it has become apparent that you have some sort of crush on mr Hawking, sort your life out, How does improving womens status give them more control? what you gonna do call them Men :S, and if you seriously think that people have more children to look after them when their older then your an absolute moron, people have all these kids because they recieve more money each week from the goverment, in some cases they earn more thru benefits than they would working full time, wheras a single man/woman would get a fraction of the amount to get by on, so therefore populating the world has become beneficial because the goverment makes it that way..
    seriously you people need to pull your head out of the sand.

  19. Dave Bishop Says:

    So. 'Hmmmm', poor people in the Congo, Nigeria, India and Indonesia are on benefits, are they? I think that you should get your head out of the Daily Mail!

  20. Lloyd Says:

    Richard say's "I can remember when, for a period of time, the City Council had this somewhat vacuous phrase as its strapline, selected I believe (not by me!) precisely because of its lack of content."

    Not at all like PEOPLE. PRIDE. PLACE., then? Or how about Original Modern? or M PEOPLE and their own strapline TOGETHER. WE ARE MANCHESTER. None of these strike you as vacuous? Well here's one that you might like to try out. 'Manchester City Council - All fur coat and no knickers'.



The blog of the leader of Manchester City Council, Councillor Richard Leese.

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