County Council committed to tackling climate change

Gloucestershire County Council is aiming to reduce its carbon emissions by 60% by 2021 through its new Carbon Management Programme (CMP) agreed at Cabinet (6th April).

It is estimated that every 1% reduction made by the council will create a saving of £100,000.

This builds on the success of the existing CMP which has achieved a reduction of carbon emissions by 7% (4,600 tonnes) since 2006/07, delivering an estimated saving of £700k.

The target was to achieve a 10% reduction by 2012 so we’re on track to reach that.

However, the new CMP sets out an ambitious plan to deliver carbon reductions which will put us ahead of Government targets.

The plan outlines around 80 individual projects which if delivered over the next ten years would see a reduction in the council’s annual energy and fuel costs by around £6m per year by 2020/21.

These include simple solutions such as improving levels of insulation and replacing old boilers with more energy efficient ones to more complex projects like, installing LEDs for street lighting.

The four main energy efficiency areas covered in the CMP are:

·         Energy efficiency in council buildings

·         Fleet and business travel

·         Street lighting, signs, bollards and traffic signals

·         Energy efficiency in schools

During the Cabinet meeting, members also agreed that a separate report which highlights the impact of the CMP on schools should come before them in later in the year.

Gloucestershire also became the first region to become a ‘10:10 County’ as part of the international campaign to encourage organisations to reduce their carbon emissions (excluding schools) by at least 3% during 2010/11.

Cllr Chas Fellows, Cabinet Member for environment and economy said: “Climate change is not only a massive threat to the global environment; it is also perhaps the greatest economic challenge facing us in the twenty-first century.”

“The adoption of our second Carbon Management Programme shows just how serious Gloucestershire County Council is about reducing carbon emissions and saving money at the same time.”