Leeds City Region

Latest News January 2012: new report: ‘The Economics of Low Carbon Cities: A Mini-Stern Review for the Leeds City Region’ launched

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The Leeds City Region (here and here ; the latter information is somewhat out of date) is a sub-regional tier of working that emerged before regional structures were formally abolished in 2011. There is now an LCR Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP), with a ‘business led’ board, the preferred governance approach of the moment. In September 2011 this launched its over-arching Partnership Plan.

For the last 3 years I and the FOE staff regional campaigner (Simon Bowens) have worked with LCR staff to advocate the development of a carbon reduction plan for the LCR region – population 3 million. First we assisted with the successful bid for LCR to be a Local Carbon Framework pilot project (and when the change of government potentially threatened its continuation, lobbied via FOE for its retention); subsequently we have continued to use FOE’s expertise in local carbon reduction approaches to campaign for and facilitate progress at LCR or individual district level.

The reward for this commitment was the inclusion as one of the four aims of the Partnership Plan of ‘Strategic Priority 3: Facilitating a Low Carbon Economy’ – previous LCR strategies just omitted climate change as a policy driver – with a stated intention of identifying a quantified target; and then even more so the completion by Andy Gouldson (Professor of Sustainability at the University of Leeds; Director, Centre for Climate Change Economics and Policy – which has Nicholas Stern on board) of a pioneering cost/benefit modelling exercise of the opportunities for and achievability of local carbon reduction. This will be launched in January 2012.