Person reading the climate action plan on a tablet device

County Council sets out plans to tackle climate change

Read the Climate Change Action Plans 2021-23 in full here.

Northumberland County Councillors have formally approved their Climate Change Action Plan for the next two years – laying out detailed plans to reduce Northumberland’s emissions to net-zero by 2030.

It means a financial focus on the green agenda, with more than £6m set aside in the draft budget plans for climate change improvements
The Climate Action Plan focuses on seven priority action areas – Council policy, engagement and partnership, heating, transport, renewable energy generation, natural resource-based carbon sequestration, and reducing waste.

The Council will work with residents, communities, businesses, visitors, strategic partners, third sector organisations and central government in these key priority areas to develop and progress further projects and initiatives to maximise opportunities to reduce emissions in Northumberland.
The plan highlights areas of progress the Council has made since the previous Climate Commitment Action Plan that was published in January 2020, with several projects already underway including the decarbonisation of Council fleet, installation of 12 additional public EV charging points across the county, and the first free tree giveaway to households and community groups.

The Council has drawn in grant funding to support a number of major schemes, including £2.9m towards a solar car port at County Hall, £2m for a potential Hexham hydro-electric project and £8.6m for renewable heat schemes.

Council Leader Glen Sanderson, said: “There is significant opportunity for Northumberland to position itself as the centre of the UK’s thriving green economy. As a Council, we will continue to lead the way by reducing energy consumption of our estate and installing renewable heat and power solutions in our buildings, as well as assessing the carbon impact of all key policy decisions we make.

“But we need the public’s support to have any chance of realising our ambition of a net-zero Northumberland by 2030. Every resident, business and visitor to Northumberland will need to make their contribution to see our great county become the UK’s greenest area.”

As part of this Action Plan, the Council will endeavour to work with local communities over the next 12 months to create a network of Community Climate Champions who will be encouraged to engage with their community to develop their own evidence based community action plans with the Council’s support.

Cllr Sanderson added: “We have vast natural resources, already absorbing more carbon than any other English county and with the potential to sequester far more, whilst supporting nature. We have resilient, innovative communities eager to build back stronger and greener from the Covid-19 crisis and as a council, we will be seeking to attract green investment, to create jobs and build more green infrastructure which will have a positive impact not only on the climate, but on our day-to-day lives.

“Achieving this net-zero target is driven by a strategic intent to attract green investment to the county, which in turn will grow the green economy and create new jobs. We are taking climate change seriously - taking a positive lead on this is a key priority for us.”

Read the Climate Change Action Plans 2021-23 in full here.

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