Climate emergency protesters have been left disappointed after Allerdale Councillors did not vote to accept their climate emergency proposal.

Protesters from Climate Emergency West Cumbria, Friends of the Earth, Extinction Rebellion, Greenpeace, the UK Student Climate Network and local representatives from Labour and the Green Party attended the council meeting on September 25, having first demonstrated outside with placards and flags, including banners made by local school children.

The proposal, written and presented at the meeting by Keswick town councillor and town climate champion, Alexandra Boardman, was proposed by Councillor Sally Lansbury, and seconded by Councillor Alan Smith.

Over 1,200 people had signed a petition over the last two months, which called for the council to transfer its energy use, including outsourced services, and investments from fossil fuels - oil and gas - to renewable energy by 2030 and to balance its carbon emissions to net zero by a variety of carbon savings.

Councillors stated their willingness to reduce carbon emissions that cause global warming, referring to increasing damage from climate change throughout the borough through flooding rivers and rising sea levels.

However, they approved an amended version of the proposal presented by Councillor Mark Jenkinson, which commits to lowering carbon emissions but removes the commitment for the council to transfer from fossil fuels to renewable energy.

It does pledge to make Allerdale carbon neutral by 2030, adding the clause "where it does not negatively impact on our communities."

Jill Perry, Green Party representative for Allerdale and Copeland said she was extremely disappointed with events: "We’ll work on to influence the council to take significant action to reduce carbon emissions to a safe level," she added.

Mike Brown, Climate Emergency West Cumbria (CEWC) said: "The amended climate motion the council accepted failed us in four ways: it didn’t declare a climate emergency, it removed divestment from fossil fuels, it added confusion with unclear terms and delayed action by kicking the can down the road."

Isabella Bridgman, aged 16 (UK Student Climate Network), said after the meeting: "If we want to avert the climate crisis, we need swift, decisive and ambitious action…whilst the council is clearly trying to do something, they’re doing far, far from enough".

Julia Robinson, Climate Emergency West Cumbria (CEWC) said: "How is it that Allerdale can’t achieve this when Redcar and Cleveland council, who have oil refineries situated in their borough, have declared a climate emergency to go carbon neutral by 2030 - surely if they can do it, we can."

Protesters will continue their action towards Allerdale council declaring a Climate Emergency and are circulating a petition which will be presented to the council on December 11.

Allerdale council's Overview and Scrutiny Committee will consider how the actions of the amended version can be achieved.