Template letter to send to candidates in 2021 local elections
Promoting, protecting and enhancing the Sussex countryside
I am writing to ask you, as a candidate for the 2021 local elections, to support the CPRE Sussex local election manifesto. CPRE Sussex is the countryside charity that campaigns to promote, enhance and protect the countryside in East and West Sussex for everyone’s benefit. We stand up for our Sussex countryside so that it can continue to sustain the health and well-being of Sussex residents and visitors and provide homes for wildlife now and for future generations.
Sussex has some of the most iconic landscapes in England including the South Downs National Park and High Weald and Chichester Harbour Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Our countryside and green spaces are of immense value for people’s physical and mental health – no more so than during coronavirus lockdowns. But our countryside is under pressure particularly from climate change and development. We need to ensure that the trend for declining biodiversity is reversed and that we plan for people and nature.
CPRE Sussex is calling for candidates in the local elections to promote solutions to the climate and ecological emergencies: by committing to action to:
– Set an emissions target for the whole council area (not just ‘direct’ council activities) of at least a 68% reduction on 1990 levels by 2030; develop and deliver a strategy to achieve this target.
– Embed climate change considerations all policy-making, demonstrating leadership by assessing and reducing the greenhouse gas emissions from all local authority policies, actions and decisions, including infrastructure and minerals decisions and divestment from fossil fuels.
– Ensure that all strategic plans work to reverse the decline in biodiversity and protect dark skies and farmland.
– Protect nature-based solutions, such as existing woodlands, trees, meadow/pasture and hedgerows.
– Invest in more planting and restoration and prioritise work to develop nature recovery strategies.
– Support our call to national government for sustainable and deliverable housing targets.
– Support the South Downs National Park, the High Weald and Chichester Harbour Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty and our iconic landscapes, protecting them from inappropriate large-scale development.
– Prioritise investment in sustainable travel including footpaths, cycleways, and bus services which help people lead healthier lives while cutting carbon emissions.
– Oppose environmentally damaging road building and airport expansion.
– Support the campaign for Highways England to be responsible for litter clearance on trunk roads.
– Recognise the character of rural roads and not support new development that overloads them.
– Develop a Quiet Lanes policy and support local communities to create safer routes for travelling.
As the election approaches, will you make a public pledge to pursue these issues if you are elected to office? If so, you could tweet a pledge on social media and tag in @CPRESussex.
If you are elected, I urge you to address the issues above. You can see the full CPRE Sussex: Manifesto for the 2021 local elections.
We must take this chance to provide the housing and infrastructure Sussex needs, while protecting and enhancing the countryside for current and future generations to enjoy.
I look forward to hearing from you.