A leading Los Angeles low carbon expert is helping Liverpool to launch its Green Partnership, sharing her experiences of creating a sustainable city.
Outdated ideas that going green costs too much have been completely discredited as cities around the world like Los Angeles, Hamburg, Sydney and New York are concentrating on developing their low carbon agendas – Liverpool is now adding its name to that prestigious list and saying we cannot afford not to become a low carbon city.
Krista Kline (pictured) is managing director of LARC (Los Angeles Regional Collaborative for Climate Action and Sustainability), which brings together local government, utilities, agencies, universities and other organisations to deliver action on climate, promote a green economy and build sustainable communities.
Krista said: “Collaboration is key in connecting policy makers to local climate research – and vice-versa. Both sides benefit from ongoing conversation about climate action goals. As the research provides us better information about local impacts, the response to climate change will continue to evolve.”
Liverpool Green Partnership has similar aims and partners include the University of Liverpool, Chamber of Commerce, NHS, Liverpool Vision, the Diocese of Liverpool and the Eldonians. The Mayor of Liverpool has also offered his support.
University of Liverpool’s John Flamson is co-Chair of the partnership and he explained: “Successful cities are collaborative cities, working together to make the city the very best it can be, economically, socially and environmentally. We hope to learn from the experiences of Los Angeles and bring together some of the excellent projects that are already underway in Liverpool.”
Liverpool Green Partnership also plans to offer evidence and support to the recently announced Mayoral Commission on Sustainability and is producing a submission to the commission, to set out what they believe Liverpool’s priorities and objectives should be.
A key recommendation will be the need to develop a single Sustainable City Vision and Plan. The Green Partnership will also recommend the Mayor works with the city region leaders to develop new financial models to stimulate local growth, demonstrating real commitment to sustainable development.
There is plenty of evidence that improving the sustainability of a city can help it to become more successful, not just because it will be a much nicer place to live and work – there are proven economic benefits too. A recent report by the CBI, (The Colour of Growth, 2012), said ‘there is a hard-nosed economic argument that moving to a low-carbon economy can drive significant business investment and create many new jobs across the country’.
Krista said: “It has been particularly important for LARC to involve the business community in our efforts around climate action. We believe that working to reduce the impact of climate change, as well as preparing for its effects, can only benefit the LA region economically. Such action towards resiliency not only brings new clean tech industry and accompanying jobs –which we are seeing in Los Angeles’s new Clean Tech Corridor and Clean Tech Incubator – but also saves local government, and individual businesses and homeowners the extraordinarily high cost of crisis management and recovery. We’ve seen that it is much less costly to prepare for climate impacts than to respond to them.”
Bristol was recently announced as the European Green Capital in 2015 and Liverpool has not ruled out bidding for the title in future years. The Green Partnership carried out a green audit of Liverpool.
John Flamson said: “We used the same marking system as the Green Capital bidding process which will help us if we do bid for the title. While the audit did reveal some areas where a lot of work is needed, such as cycle lane provision, it did also show that Liverpool is well on its way to being a green and sustainable city and we believe the Green Partnership will help us to develop and build on this.”
Councillor Tim Moore, cabinet member for transport and climate change, said: “I believe this is the beginning of a collaboration which will be of great benefit to our city. Sustainability is vital to our economic success but also helps to create healthy communities. It is a key priority for the Mayor and the Partnership. Working with the new Mayoral Commission on Sustainability, the Partnership will help us to identify our main priorities and develop a strategy to create a low carbon Liverpool.”
Any organisations or individuals interested in joining Liverpool Green Partnership should visit www.lowcarbonliverpool.co.uk for more information.The Liverpool Green Partnership Environmental Audit, carried out by Low Carbon Liverpool, is available on the Low Carbon Liverpool website at http://www.lowcarbonliverpool.com/
The organisations already signed up to Liverpool Green Partnership include:
• Diocese of Liverpool/Faith for Change
• University of Liverpool
• Liverpool NHS
• Liverpool Chamber of Commerce
• Environment Agency
• Mersey Forest
• Liverpool city region Local Enterprise Partnership
• Liverpool Vision
• City Council
• Merseyside Environmental Advisory Service
• Atlantic Gateway
• Mersey Waste and Recycling Authority