Top priority for climate change in new committee structure

The Council's focus on action to help tackle climate change is being boosted with changes to one of its scrutiny committees.

If proposals are approved on 31 March, the existing Neighbourhoods and Environment Scrutiny committee will become the Environment and Climate Change Scrutiny Committee – with changes to its remit to allow it to focus purely on environmental issues. 

The shift comes after the Council accepted calls in a petition last month for extra scrutiny and recognised that the previous range of demands on the Neighbourhoods and Environment committee did not give sufficient time to climate change issues.  

But instead of creating a new seventh scrutiny committee, the proposed change – which will be considered by the Constitutional and Nomination Committee - adjusts the responsibilities of the existing six committees without the need for an extra commitee and associated extra costs. 

The Council is keen to ensure that the other five scrutiny commitees also continue to scrutinise climate change actions where they fall under their remits, and that Manchester’s climate change ambitions are seen as a responsibility for everyone. 

Councillor Pat Karney, chair of the Constitutional and Nomination Committee, said: “This change will be another demonstration of our commitment to Manchester becoming zero carbon by 2038 – 12 years ahead of national targets – and the Council playing its full part in achieving that goal.  

“Scrutiny committees play an important role in examining decisions, providing challenge and holding the council to account and this new committee will further enhance this role.”  

If approved, the changes will come into immediate effect with the new Environment and Scrutiny Committee holding its first scheduled meeting on Thursday, 27 May 2021.  

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