Hyndburn Borough Council declared a Climate Emergency and Climate Pledge on the 19th September 2019.
The Council pledged to achieve Council’s activities net-zero carbon by 2030.
The pledge is a series of recommendations set out in response to help limit global warming to 1.5°C or stay well below 2°C global temperature target compared to pre-industrial levels.
The measures put in place are aimed at reducing the organisations Carbon Footprint, and help off-set carbon emissions.
On the 18th November (2021) at Full Council the Council gave the commitment to invest £1 million of Council reserves into a pot to contribute towards tackling global warming providing a clear demonstration of the Council’s determination to tackle climate change with positive action and to enable some of the changes which need to be realised in the district.
Progress has been started to be made within the Councils own operations to achieve net zero carbon by :
- In September 2020, the Council was awarded the One Carbon World Carbon Neutral Gold Standard grant. The report detailed the carbon footprint of the Council and provided recommendations to reduce and off-set its footprint.
- One Carbon World Carbon Footprint study identified 2,700 tonnes CO2e emissions with the highest priority recommendation being to decarbonise energy, especially from gas usage in the Councils buildings. This was actioned immediately and helped to secure £2.3 million investment from the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme together with capital investment from the Council.
- A total transformation of the energy infrastructure is underway at Hyndburn Leisure Centre, projected to reduce emissions by 75% .
- Similarly, works underway at Scaitcliffe House will achieve significant emissions reductions, with new heating system to replace inefficient panel heaters in half the building, high efficiency LED lighting throughout and doubling the solar PV capacity with a second large array on the roof. And at the Crematorium, initial measures to achieve efficiency improvements have been completed and an ongoing Heat Decarbonisation Plan will be developed to reduce emissions further.
- Energy supply contracts have also been shifted to procure green tariff electricity.
- The second highest area of emissions is from fuel usage in the Council’s fleet. A range of measures are underway to reduce carbon emissions from the fleet, in tandem with external expertise.
- EV charging points at 3 sites, potentially allowing for staff car charging as well as fleet vehicles
- Progressively switching the fleet to electric vehicles, beginning with the small van fleet, possible 10 replacement vehicles in the coming year
- Tools, plant and maintenance machinery
- Exploring viability and options for the large fleet, in tandem with Lancashire-wide waste management arrangements.
- Initial considerations for Climate Action Programme (with multiple benefits for Adaptations, Resilience and Carbon Off-setting):
- Natural solutions for carbon capture and climate resilience;
- Tree planting and woodland creation on Council and privately owned land;
- A tree for every household, through the following 2 proposals:
- 3 year community tree and woodland programme, aiming to plant 20,000 trees plus other habitat enhancements on HBC land primarily, create 2 new community woodlands, with involvement by local people, schools and groups.
- 3 years of additional funding for the Lancashire Woodland Connect programme, targets to be agreed but with a similar aim of 20,000 trees on privately owned land primarily.
- Aim to plant a tree for every resident by the end of the decade, by continuing these programmes over a longer timespan to maximise the amount of woodland creation in areas which also benefit flood management and habitat connectivity.
- Adaptation and resilience measures through peatland and grassland restoration
- Accelerate provision of new cycling and walking infrastructure and encourage active travel as an alternative to vehicle use.