CARMARTHENSHIRE County Council must make bolder decisions in the aim of decarbonisation according to a cabinet member.

The council’s cabinet member for climate change, decarbonisation and sustainable development, Cllr Aled Vaughan Owen, spoke about the vision at the inaugural Green Economy Conference which saw 1,500 people attend in Swansea. He also talked about partnerships with other businesses and organisations to tackle the growing issue of climate change.

Cllr Owen said: “It’s no longer appropriate to work in individual organisations and silos. We need to step into a radical new space where we collaborate across organisations and departments, stepping away from incremental changes and stretching the boundaries of what is possible.

“As a local authority is it our job to lead on this – but firstly, it’s important that we have politicians of the level of knowledge appropriate to the challenges that we face, who are equipped to make can make crucial policy decisions.

“We as local authorities need to master the art of delivering through others – purpose-driven businesses, academia, those who are responsive, innovative, should be given freedom to learn, to scale, and to share.”

He highlighted that the council has its own carbon literacy offering which has been given to council members to raise understanding the climate and nature challenges and has been taking members and officers of a journey of exploration into the circular economy with support from the Circular Economies Innovation Communities.

“There are some regional and national thinkers and doers in the circular economy who imagine a world where waste is a concept of the past and resources flow seamlessly, creating balance between economy and ecology.

“Llanelli is quickly developing into a place where circularity is not just a model but a philosophy,” he said, highlighting the Zero Waste Llanelli project and discussed work in the county to dedicate one of the 24 county farms as a space to grow vegetables as part of a food strategy to unite growers, public bodies and food producers to shorten supply chains and create regenerative food systems.

“Recently, we’ve awarded over £7.5m through the Shared Prosperity Fund to organisations and businesses supporting us in skills, decarbonisation, the Circular Economy, nature restoration and so much more However, this does require well-informed leaders at all levels, who understand the issues.

“We can no longer afford well-intentioned people with the wrong information making decisions about the future. We must be ambitious. We must be bold, and we must act on the stories of hope, not hype. We need to be the generation that doesn’t consume, but enriches the world that we live in.”

The Green Economy Conference and Exhibition was organised by 4theRegion to strengthen communication and collaboration to build a green economy in south-west Wales.