Gloucestershire County Council’s third annual report on its climate change strategy has seen positive action to reduce carbon emissions across the county.
The report, which will be presented at the next meeting of the Council’s Cabinet on Wednesday 25 January, outlines the progress made to tackle the climate emergency.
Some of the highlights include planting 66,000 trees, an increase in recycling rates to 50.8%, 1,000 electric vehicle charging points commissioned, The High School Leckhampton was opened and will run carbon neutrally, and Climate Leadership Gloucestershire was established.
In addition, a further 80,000 trees will be planted this season and the 26-mile cycle spine linking Stroud and Bishop’s Cleeve, via Gloucester and Cheltenham, will continue to be constructed.
Latest Government figures, which are published with a two-year delay, show that carbon emissions across the county dropped by 12% in 2020 compared to the 2019 figures, against a 10% drop for South West and for England.
The council, along with all other Gloucestershire authorities, declared a climate emergency in 2019 and the county council adopted its second Climate Change Strategy. This strategy saw the council set out the following vision for Gloucestershire:
- By 2045 a carbon neutral county that provides quality of life now and for future generations, having improved the quality of our natural environment.
- By 2030 to have reduced the county’s carbon emissions by 80% on 2005.
The council is committed to lead by example. Its corporate targets are:
- Reduce our carbon emissions (buildings, street lighting, fleet, business travel) by 80% by 2030 compared to 2006/07
- Aim for Carbon Net Zero by 2030 through carbon offsetting.
The emissions produced by the council dropped by 78% in 2021/22 compared to the baseline rate in 2006/07.
Cabinet is set to note the report and approve the five-year climate change action plan from 2023/23 to 2027/28 at the meeting later this month.
Cllr David Gray, Cabinet member responsible for the environment at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “As a council we are committed to reaching net zero emissions from all sources across the county by 2045, to tackle the climate emergency.
“This report shows that we are making good progress towards our target and will continue to work to prevent climate change.”
The full report can be viewed within the Cabinet agenda.
Visit the Greener Gloucestershire webpage for more information on how the council is tackling the climate emergency.
You can sign up to receive the ‘Greener Gloucestershire’ newsletter to keep up to date on local activity, as well as to receive hints and tips on how you can reduce carbon emissions.