ELECTION candidates in Clacton have declared a climate emergency and vowed to take the fight to climate change should they be voted into power next month.

On December 12, residents will head to the polls to vote for the politician they want to act as the representative for the area when in parliament.

The exhausted topic of Brexit is likely to prove to be the deciding factor, but the election hopefuls have now shared their plans to tackle the environmental crisis.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Callum RobertsonCallum Robertson

Callum Robertson, Liberal Democrats, says the party will invest in planting 60 million trees and reduce carbon emissions to net zero by 2045.

On a more personal level, Mr Robertson has started to take steps to cut down his carbon footprint by using more public transport.

He said: “We have a climate emergency on our hands. We need to take the climate crisis seriously.

“The clock is ticking and the only way to get the urgent changes is to each do our bit alongside businesses mucking in too.

“With the Liberal Democrat plan for the environment, we can stop the climate crisis and build a brighter future.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Chris SouthallChris Southall

The Green Party’s Chris Southall has long campaigned for more climate awareness and often joins Extinction Rebellion rallies in the town centre.

He says the party is working to persuade Tendring Council to declare a climate emergency and the risk of flooding needs to be seriously addressed.

He said: “Action by government and local councils is key to fighting the climate crisis, but changes to our individual lifestyles have a part to play as well.

“Flooding from the sea threatens us here in Tendring and scientists are predicting up to a metre of sea level rise by the end of the century.

“Other parties are making many promises, but what we urgently need now as Green MPs to ensure action and not just words.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Just-John SextonJust-John Sexton


Just-John Sexton, of the Monster Raving Loony Party, believes leaving the EU will give the country more freedom to reduce the use of plastic.

He also says that climate change could be helped by reducing traffic by making public transport more affordable and increasing the use in renewable energy.

Mr Sexton said: “Climate change is a global issue, not just a UK or EU issue, and should be treated as such.

“There is so much waste in the area and reducing that can only be a good thing.

“We should also limit printed party election publications, which I am doing by only using a single A6 sheet.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Kevin Bonavia Kevin Bonavia

Labour candidate Kevin Bonavia believes making electric cars more cost effective could be the way forward.

He said: “We all have a role to play in reducing emissions that are making climate change worse and also polluting our air which is killing thousands of people every year.

“A good government can help us make those changes by improving bus services across Tendring and making it much cheaper to buy and run electric cars.

“Labour is also planning a green new deal which will create thousands of apprenticeships in businesses that provide alternative forms of energy.

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Andrew MorganAndrew Morgan

Other candidates, such as Andrew Morgan, independent, has said he would first look to improve recycling rates on a local level.

Mr Morgan also wants to make it mandatory for schools to teach children about recycling and climate change from an early age.

He said: “I am very in tune with climate change and I believe at a local level people can play a big part in helping.

“I support free energy, but I think recycling is a massive thing, we need to get rid of packaging, and I will really push the council to recycle more as well.

“Clacton is doing a lot already, but I want to more because it is good for us and the environment.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Colin BennettColin Bennett

Colin Bennett, independent, will use his experience as a taxi driver to try and make sure taxis are more eco-friendly.

He has also urged his work colleagues to turn off their engines when they are waiting to pick up passengers.

He said: “We need to think green more often and I will put more emphasis on smart meters to regulate nuclear electric power.

“I have already spoke to the taxi licensing department regarding electric and hybrid taxis and we need to make buses far more cleaner.”

Clacton and Frinton Gazette: Giles WatlingGiles Watling

Conservative Giles Watling, who is looking to reclaim his position as Clacton’s MP, says his party, if elected, will continue the work it has already started in order to impact the planet in a positive way.

Mr Watling said: “Climate change is an important and emotive issue, and it is right that those who wish to demonstrate on this matter can do so.

“But we must also recognise what this Government has already achieved.

“A Conservative majority will put concrete measures in place to reduce our environmental impact further.

“And on a personal level, we all need to do more, even if it is just planting a tree, as I did recently with a sapling gifted by Extinction Rebellion.”