If you’re concerned that this is going to be another opinion piece on Brexit by a politician rocking backwards and forwards like a motherless child, hands on temples, wailing, “Make it stop, make it stop,” then calm yourself.

Despite wanting to unpick what everyone thinks now compared to 2016, it needs to be put aside, at least for these 300 words.

While we’ve all been distracted by the PM’s latest efforts to be Dominic Cummings’ representative on Earth, there have been a couple of news items that should be scaring the proverbial out of us.

The first was the announcement by the UN that the impact of climate change on our oceans and frozen areas of our planet has been more significant than we thought. The oceans have been warming and the loss of permanently frozen lands threatens to unleash more carbon.

The second was a UK report showing that a quarter of mammals potentially face extinction. A “great thinning” of creature population numbers has been taking place since around 1970. 'The State of Nature' also shows that almost one in five plants is at threat of extinction.

So what has this to do with local government, you may ask? Well, across the country Labour councils are taking action to make a positive difference to our impact on climate change and the environment.

Leeds is going for 100 per cent clean energy by 2050, Plymouth is banning single use plastics, Gedling is installing public water fountains, Stevenage has a biodiversity action plan, Stockport’s planting trees, Oxford, Southampton, Brighton & Hove have a charter for clean air; removing polluting vehicles and introducing electric ones while Southwark is converting lamp posts to be able to charge electric vehicles.

Climate change is truly global but we can make a real difference at a local level.

  • Cllr Matt Turmaine is a Labour councillor for Holywell