We have recieved a significant number of enquiries with similar content. We publish the letter below along with our response.
I am writing to you to ask if, should you be elected as my new Metro Mayor, you will use your powers and influence to build an economy that works for the wellbeing of people and the environment of the West Midlands.
A genuinely sustainable vision for the West Midlands must deal with the crisis of polluted air – which contributes to the deaths of 1,460(1) people in the area and the loss of hundreds of millions of pounds to the economy each year. It must ensure that in tackling the housing crisis we make certain that new homes are built in the right place, and to the right standards. It must recognise that the future is low carbon and promote a clean and renewable energy based economy.
Will you, if elected, use your powers and influence on local and national Government to back the following initiatives:
1. Work to ensure that starting in 2018 all major towns and cities across the West Midlands area have a mandatory, well-funded clean-air zone; and support the phase-out of diesel vehicles throughout the area by 2025, and support a 21st Century Clean Air Act to bring together and strengthen legal requirements after Brexit.
2. Commit to working with partners to reduce traffic and boost the uptake of public transport, walking, cycling, and electric vehicles (EVs) through integrated transport and planning strategy.
3. Ensure zero carbon standards from all new homes and buildings (including affordable homes) across the West Midlands conurbation.
4. Explore and develop opportunities for innovative revenue raising policies for the area to fund low carbon transition – such as a city tax on hotel rooms.
Clean tech and innovation
5. Prioritise and encourage planning for renewable energy and energy storage in all of the Combined Authority areas, and work with government to make the West Midlands a leader in the use of innovative clean energy storage and smart demand side technologies.
6. Develop low carbon skills and research. Work with local universities and colleges to identify and plug needs in research and training in low carbon technology and the green economy.
7. Support wildlife and habitats; particularly bees and local pollinators by working with the biodiversity sector across the West Midlands.
8. Work with partners to support divesting local pension funds from fossil fuels.
I look forward to your reply