Greenhouse gas emissions
Gloucestershire County Council continues its strong commitment and track record in responding to climate change, recognising its community leadership role, putting its own house in order and using public resources efficiently.
Our Carbon Management Programme adopted in April 2011, sets out an ambitious plan to deliver carbon reductions to reduce our annual energy and fuel costs by around 6m per year by 2020/21, reducing emissions by 60% against our baseline.
We continue to make good progress corporately - 2012/13 estate emissions fell by 4% (793 tonnes) through a mix of efficiency measures and estate rationalisation; on track for 60% reduction by 2021. However, schools emissions increased by 16% (4,723 tonnes), from energy for space heating in schools due to the cold winter and spring, giving an overall increase of 8% (3,930 tonnes).
Since the 2006/07 baseline:
- Corporate estate emissions have fallen by 26% (7,593 tonnes), saving the council almost 1m in energy costs
- Schools emissions have increased by 2% (681 tonnes), costing schools more than 84k in energy costs
Emissions under the CRC increased by almost 20% (6,683 tonnes) from 2011/12, due to increased energy for space heating in schools. Reported emissions do not include unmetered supply for street lighting, signs, bollards and signals, which is exempt for Phase 1.
We have 75% AMR coverage of electricity and gas supplies under our corporate contract; around 80% of our supply.
Under the CRC, we are responsible for emissions from publicly-funded schools in Gloucestershire; 60% of our liability under the scheme. Almost all secondary schools and many primary schools have/ are set to become academies, which puts around 34% of our liability outside of our control. This continues to affect our performance under CRC, as our Gross Revenue Expenditure is falling, with the transfer of funds to academies, but we retain liability for their emissions under the scheme. Schools will not be included within Phase 2.
- Gloucestershire County Council GHG Emissions 2012-13
- Gloucestershire County Council GHG Emissions 2011-12
- Gloucestershire County Council GHG Emissions 2010-11
Corporate Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan
Responding to climate change is a key priority for Gloucestershire County Council. We have already been working hard to put our own house in order by drawing up and putting in place our Carbon Management Strategy and Implementation Plan. Now we are preparing for the future in order to lessen the effects of climate change, which as we are all too aware, include flooding.
The Corporate Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan pulls together our existing work and sets out our priorities for adapting to and mitigating against causes of climate change through our estate, services and leadership role within the county. It takes a long-term view, looking towards 2040 and even further ahead. Our ambition is that climate change will be a key factor in decision-making when deciding how we deliver our services and also in our work with partners to secure the future of Gloucestershire, the region and beyond.
Section 40(1) of The Natural Environment and Rural Communities Act 2006 gives a general biodiversity duty to the County Council. We must take account of conserving biodiversity whilst carrying out our functions. An important part of the biodiversity duty is to meet other statutory obligations for the natural environment which include The Conservation of Habitats and Species Regulations, Wildlife and Countryside Act and The Countryside and Rights of Way Act. Read more on the Natural England and Local Nature Partnership web pages.
Sustainable Procurement and Commissioning Policy
Local government expenditure on goods, services, works and utilities has significant economic, social and environmental impacts. Demand we create has the potential to drive unsustainable resource use, pollution, waste generation and may be indirectly promoting unfair trade practices and the displacement of rural communities. Sustainable procurement can bring about significant cost savings through strategic thinking, effective demand management and mechanisms such as whole life costing.
Strategic Flood Risk Assessment
Flooding is a natural process which shapes the natural environment, but also threatens life and can cause substantial distress and damage to property. The effects of weather events can be increased in severity as a consequence of past decisions about the location, design and nature of development and as a consequence of climate change. While flooding cannot be wholly prevented, its impacts can be avoided and reduced through good planning and management. The Strategic Flood Risk Assessment (SFRA) aims to ensure that flood risk forms one of the material planning considerations to help deliver sustainable development.