Climate Change Action Plan: In Summary
This Council’s Climate Change Action Plan is broadly but not specifically grouped into the headers proposed in ‘A blueprint for accelerating climate action and a green recovery at the local level’ (January 2021).
- Growing the Zero and Low Carbon Economy
- Retrofitting homes and buildings to reduce consumption and emissions
- Decarbonising transport
- Planning to deliver Zero Carbon development that protects and enhances nature
- Reducing Waste and Encouraging Sustainable Consumption
- Restoring Nature for all
- Developing local authority funding, governance and accounting systems that are fit for purpose
We also consider the themes fitting within the Council Strategy 2020-2030 and the Cumbria Joint Public Health and Wellbeing Strategy (2019-2029).
This action plan has been developed across Political parties within the Council. Each section is led by different Council members according to their own areas of knowledge and special interest who work as task groups within the Climate Change group. The work is supported and delivered by relevant senior managers and Lead Officers across all departments.
The action plan is a ‘live’ document and will develop over time. The structure is created to enable new actions to be easily added to the numbering system. Completed actions will remain included in the published plan, and will be noted as completed.
Further Government direction and work is needed to carry out detailed appraisals of baseline data and data collection guidelines. Some of our actions and targets will change in line with the Bills currently going through Parliament. These are the Environment Bill, the Decarbonisation and Economic Strategy Bill and the Climate and Ecology Bill. Added to these, the Glasgow COP26 in November this year, will bring new ambitions which will be reflected in future revisions of this action plan.
A climate change action plan cannot be delivered by one person alone, nor solely by Allerdale Borough Council. In order to be carbon neutral, we need to embed climate actions across all functions, policies and aspects of the work with people living, working and visiting the area to achieve these outcomes.
We will be engaging with our communities across the borough to rise up and take action to address what is arguably the most difficult, but most important, challenge of our age.
A blueprint for accelerating climate action and a green recovery at the local leve l (ADEPT [Association of Directors of Environment, Economy, Transport and Planning] , Ashden, Friends of the Earth, Grantham Institute - Climate Change and the Environment (Imperial College London), Green Alliance, Greenpeace UK, Local Government Association, London Environment Directors’ Network [LEDNet], Place-based Climate Action Network [PCAN at LSE, University of Edinburgh, University of Leeds and Queens University Belfast] and Solace, January 2021)
So You’ve Declared A Climate Emergency, What Next? (APSE)
The Sixth Carbon Budget for Local Authorities (The Climate Change Committee)
A Carbon Baseline for Cumbria (Small World Consulting)
Setting Climate Commitments for Allerdale (Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, March 2021)
Below are explanations of some of the terms used in this document.
'A net zero organisation will set and pursue an ambitious 1.5°C aligned science-based target for its full value-chain emissions. Any remaining hard-to-decarbonise emissions can be compensated using certified greenhouse gas removal*.’ (Science Based Targets Initiative)
1. The company will set and pursue an ambitious 1.5°C aligned science-based target for its full value chain emissions
2. The boundary must be global scopes 1, 2 and 3 for the organisation
3. Any remaining hard-to-decarbonise emissions can be compensated with certified greenhouse gas removals (GGR*). These should be restricted to only certified methods of GGR, to increase confidence that the carbon is permanently sequestered. Importantly, the company or organisation should make sure that only truly ‘hard-to-decarbonise’ emissions may be compensated.
* ”There is still much discussion around appropriate GGR methods and the markets for GGRs require significant development in terms of volume, market mechanisms, and certification protocols.”
‘A condition in which during a specified period there has been no net increase in the global emission of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere as a result of the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the subject during the same period’
This means that no carbon dioxide emissions are being produced from a product/service e.g. zero-carbon electricity could be provided by a 100% renewable energy supplier.
How do net zero targets differ from science-based targets? Science-based targets set a trajectory for emissions reduction for scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, and do not allow an organisation/company to use offsets to achieve a reduction.
Net zero targets bring in a new aspect of compensating for those residual emissions using greenhouse gas removals. Greenhouse gas removals take remaining emissions from the atmosphere and permanently sequester them.
It is important to note that organisations/companies are unlikely to achieve a net zero target without large reductions in their scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions, as the greenhouse gas removal market is immature.
The first step is to measure your company’s scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions and set a 1.5°C aligned science-based target for your own operations and value chain. You can then consider the options for setting a target to go further, bringing together your internal stakeholders and identifying whether a net zero or carbon neutral target is best for your organization/company.
Scopes 1, 2 and 3
‘Scopes’ are defined as emissions broken down into three categories by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol in order to better understand the source.
Scope 1 – All Direct Emissions from the activities of an organisation or under their control. Including fuel combustion on site such as gas boilers, fleet vehicles and air-conditioning leaks.
Scope 2 – Indirect Emissions from electricity purchased and used by the organisation. Emissions are created during the production of the energy and eventually used by the organisation.
Scope 3 – All Other Indirect Emissions from activities of the organisation, occurring from sources that they do not own or control. These are usually the greatest share of the carbon footprint, covering emissions associated with business travel, procurement, waste and water.