Council approves new climate crisis strategy

Uttlesford District Council has agreed a new strategy that sets out how it will address local climate change issues over the coming decade.

The council declared a Climate and Ecological Emergency in 2019 which committed it to achieving net-zero carbon status by 2030 and to protecting and enhancing our local biodiversity.

As part of this commitment, the council has approved a new strategy - the 'Uttlesford Climate Crisis Strategy 2021-2030' - that sets a clear direction for tackling climate change and its key priorities. The council has allocated £1million to support climate change projects over the next three years.

The strategy builds on previous work and highlights a key set of themes and priorities - resources, energy use, planning and development, transport, council assets and operations, natural environment, and adapting to climate change - that will be used as the framework for developing an action plan.

Cllr Louise Pepper, Portfolio Holder for Environment and Green Issues, said: "The climate crisis is a hugely important issue, one that we all have a responsibility for and must play a part in addressing.

"Since declaring a climate and ecological emergency, the council has been working with partners and others in the community to develop a new strategy and action plan that builds on previous work and identifies areas in which we can make lasting change. The strategy is a step towards our carbon-zero goal, and I am pleased colleagues have given it their support.

"We will continue to work with partners and community groups to develop a bold new action plan as quickly as possible. Only by working together and making best use of resources, skills and expertise can we ensure that we are doing everything possible to prevent local and global changes to the climate."

The action plan will set out the different work streams by the council and partner organisations, including work by community groups, and will be reviewed regularly to ensure it remains relevant and takes into account changes including external influences such as national policy and legislation. The action plan work is led by the Climate Change Working Group which includes community representatives.

Residents and businesses can read the Uttlesford Climate Crisis Strategy on the climate change webpage.

1 March 2021