South Gloucestershire Council has been ranked in the top-10 councils in the UK on new Climate Emergency Action Plan Scorecards, developed by Climate Emergency UK.
The Scorecards have been developed to provide easy to use public information about council’s Climate Emergency Action Plans and as a way for councils, officers and campaigners to compare and improve their plans. Climate Emergency UK consulted with councils across the UK to develop the scorecard metric and over 300 councils were scored based on publicly available information about their Climate Emergency plans. Each council had the opportunity to respond to their initial results before the scorecards were published.
South Gloucestershire Council ranked as the seventh-best single tier/unitary authority and tenth overall, out of 324 plans examined across the entire UK. We were given a score of 80 per cent, with the average for Scottish and English councils being 46 per cent, dropping to 31 per cent for Wales and 25 per cent for councils in Northern Ireland.
Leader of South Gloucestershire Council, Cllr Toby Savage, said: “We are delighted and encouraged that our overall position on the Climate Plan Scorecards is so high. Working together is essential to meet our targets and ambitions and we will continue to lead, enable and inspire the changes needed to hit our targets and tackle the impacts of a changing climate in our area.
“Since declaring a Climate Emergency in 2019, we have enshrined taking meaningful action to address the Climate and Nature Emergencies into our Council Plan and developed strategies and policies to reach our carbon neutral target by 2030.
“There are actions that we can take as a council, and we are taking many of those steps, but perhaps most important of all is that we see our role as crucial in helping our communities adapt to the changing climate and restore and protect nature through, for example, our work with Town and Parish Councils to develop Local Nature Action Plans.
“As a local authority, we are continuing to invest in renewable energy and technology that will help to cut carbon in the district and broaden our plans for improving biodiversity.
“We have sought new opportunities to increase renewable energy uptake in the area, including the group buying Solar Together Scheme, where residents could register for solar panel and battery storage at a reduced rate. We’re also investing in sustainable transport networks and infrastructure with more charging points for electric cars, improvements to our cycle network and Yate Park & Ride and changing the way we run our services to cut down on emissions.
“We are working on projects to protect nature and improve biodiversity by changing how we manage the land we own and planting more trees on our land to provide shading, flood defence and homes for nature.
“Responding to the Climate and Nature Emergencies is the challenge of our time and I hope that the steps we take today will benefit generations of South Gloucestershire residents into the future. The scope of the challenge is immense. This recognition of our work so far is very welcome, but we are not complacent and we will continue to do more to play our part in the years ahead.”
See the full results at: https://councilclimatescorecards.uk