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17.12.19

Gloucestershire council to reduce carbon emissions by 89%

Gloucestershire County Council has announced a series of commitments ahead of its next Cabinet meeting (Dec 20) in a bid to tackle climate change.

The Cabinet will be asked to agree a switch to all-renewable electricity, bringing their total CO2 emission reduction to 89% since 2007, building on the 70% emission cut they are already achieving.

In 2005, the council published its first Carbon Management Strategy, as their first act to tackle climate change, and in May 2019, joined other Council’s in declaring a ‘climate emergency’.

The Council itself has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2030, with the whole county reaching 80% less emissions by this time and following suit to net zero carbon by 2050.

Other actions to be highlighted in the meeting include a £1m action fund to fight the effects of climate change, a further £1m available to support other public sector organisations with carbon reducing projects and one million trees to be planted by 2030.

By using only 100% renewable electricity to power council property, this will see not only buildings, but lit road signs, bollards and 60,000 streetlights lit with greener energy.

Contractors competing for bids will be required to report a “carbon and environmental cost” on each bid and 200 new electric vehicle charging points will be installed by 2030.

These priorities were derived from consultations with 3,293 residents and 200 businesses, finding that an average 86% (88% business and 84% residents) of respondents in Gloucestershire were concerned about the impact of climate change.

Cllr Nigel Moor, cabinet member for environment and planning, said:

“Gloucestershire County Council has done a huge amount to cut its own carbon emissions. This strategy sets out how we can move beyond that, and help every home and business in our county do the same. This is a key issue for our future, and for our children’s future and the council’s record shows we are dealing with it with utmost seriousness.

“Transport in and around the county is one major issue we have to address. We are currently reviewing our Local Transport Plan, as well as working with partners on installing electric charging points and improving public transport. We do have a journey but these plans acknowledge this as well as how far we’ve come since 2005.”

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