Burnham-On-Sea’s former MP has called for a ‘climate emergency’ to be declared in Somerset.

County Councillor Tessa Munt, who represents the Wells on the county council, has lodged a motion calling on Somerset to take urgent action against climate change.

Ahead of the next full County Council meeting – where the authority’s budget will be decided – she has launched a petition here urging local people to sign it before the deadline of Wednesday 20th February.

Tessa has also published the full text of her council motion online, and says: “The need to combat the continuing emission of greenhouse gases and global warming overshadows every other issue.”

“Our Councils are well-placed to help tackle this Climate Emergency.”

“I call on Somerset County Council to declare a climate emergency and initiate a massive society-wide climate action mobilisation. Human activity has already caused irreversible climate change, the impact of which is felt around the world.”

“Global temperatures have increased by over 1 degree Centigrade from pre-industrial levels.”

Tessa warns that levels of carbon dioxide already exceed the “safe” level for humanity, and that by 2030 the world will “overshoot” the 1.5 degrees Centigrade limit for temperature rises set by the Paris Agreement.

She calls for local people to cut their current annual carbon emissions from 6.5 tonnes to two tonnes to “reduce the chance of runaway global warming and limit the effects of climate breakdown.”

“Individuals can accept responsibility for living in a more sustainable way, but cannot be expected to make these changes on their own. Somerset, with its long coastline and large low-lying areas across the Levels and Moors, is particularly vulnerable to effects of climate change.”