Moorlands Climate Action enters 2021 angry, determined and resolute. Angry at the continued failure of Staffordshire Moorlands District Council to come up with a coherent plan – any plan – to translate their declaration of a climate emergency into action. Determined to continue to campaign on this and other climate matters. Resolute because throughout the year, the actions of members have shown that, together, they constitute the largest pool of citizen knowledge and commitment on climate and environmental issues in the district.

Apart from developing the most comprehensive critique of SMDC inaction, while maintaining sustained and constructive participation in SMDC climate working groups, MCA has cemented its district-wide credibility by cooperating with officials at town and district level in practical matters such as a water bottle refill scheme and town planting.

As an organisation it has strengthened its links with other climate action groups. Indeed, some members have found through their participation in online climate forums and seminars that MCA is considerably ahead of many fellow campaigners in other parts of the UK. We don’t, of course, view this as a competition, and have no desire to be ‘World Beating’ in climate matters. Doing our tiny bit to help others help save the World will do.

As an organisation, we have obviously been hit by the limitations imposed by the Covid crisis but are planning for when people will once again be able to meet. Particularly exciting is the regular stall at Leek market – planned for the Spring, restrictions permitting, which will offer climate-friendly gardening advice and goods such as seeds.

And we start the New Year with the news that Alana Wheat will be joining us as communications co-ordinator. Alana brings a host of practical skills with her, but most of all an astonishing record of commitment and activity in community and environmental issues.

The next couple of months will be very busy on the SMDC front. Even as measured by his own timetable, Councillor Porter is now running out of time – and excuses. MCA may have been the most long-standing and most vocal of his critics but we are no longer alone. We cannot reclaim the lost year or more in what is, after all, an emergency, but we can enter the New Year confident that we are more strongly placed than ever to position climate change where it should be – at the centre of the agenda in the Moorlands.