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Green mayoral candidate puzzled by award for West Yorkshire Combined Authority for showing climate leadership

Green candidate for mayor reacts with surprise to see regional authority recognised for showing leadership in tackling the climate emergency.

Andrew Cooper speaking at press release

Today (2nd October) The West Yorkshire Combined Authority (WYCA) has won the award for “Leadership in Responding to the Climate Emergency” at the annual MJ Local Government Achievement Awards.

Councillor Andrew Cooper has said

“To be honest I am puzzled by this award.  If anyone looked past the smoke and mirrors they will be able to see how much our local councils here in West Yorkshire are not taking the climate crisis seriously.

“Our Labour-run councils and WYCA are still obsessed with building new roads. Of the £875m allocated as part of the West Yorkshire-plus Transport Fund, £660m is allocated to road building programmes compared to just under £20m to building railway stations – just the one in Elland.

Anna Watson“If the WYCA is committed to reducing road traffic, tackling air pollution and getting to grips with climate breakdown then it’s simple – we need to stop funding new roads.”

Anna Watsona Green Party campaigner from Shipley added,

“Declaring a climate emergency is more than just saying the words. It is ensuring that every decision considers the climate change impact and action is taken on it.

"However, here in Bradford, there are plans to spend millions on building new roads - £64m on an unnecessary link road through the Tong & Fulneck Valley and £47m on widening Canal Road between Bradford city centre and Shipley, which will only funnel more cars into Shipley.

“Real leadership would be spending these sorts of sums on public transport and promoting more walking and cycling. We need WYCA and our local councils to stop locking us in to climate damaging development.”