Councillors discuss continuing to cut carbon emissions

Councillors will pledge to continue to cut carbon emissions across Wychavon, with a 50 per cent reduction planned by 2030, to help tackle the climate crisis facing the planet.

Members of the Executive Board discussed the future targets at a meeting on Wednesday (18 September) where they approved the development of a new Wychavon Intelligently Green Plan.

The 50% reduction will be set against 2005 carbon emission levels, in-line with the Worcestershire Energy Strategy.

Councillors will also pledge to double the size of the district's low carbon business sector and triple the amount of energy generated from renewable technology by 2030. There will also be a target to further reduce carbon emissions generated by the council's own operations.

Full details of how Wychavon intends to achieve the new targets will be set out in April next year when the new Intelligently Green Plan is presented to councillors for approval.

Originally launched in 2012, the Intelligently Green Plan set out more than 40 actions Wychavon would take to help residents and businesses cut their energy consumption and reduce carbon emissions by 2020.

Actions completed include installing solar panels on the Civic Centre in Pershore, investing in a hydroelectric plant, installing electric car charging points and helping fuel poor households to improve their energy efficiency.

On top of actions in the plan, Wychavon has taken other measures to reduce its impact on the planet. Earlier this year councillors agreed to invest £52,000 in installing solar panels on seven of the district's toilets at Viaduct Meadow in Evesham, Milestone Ground, Church Close and Activity Park in Broadway, St Andrew's Square in Droitwich and Church Walk in Pershore.

It is estimated this will save more than 16 tonnes of carbon emissions, the equivalent to emissions generated by the average car driving almost 36,000 miles or charging more than 1.8million smartphones.

A £47,000 refurbishment of Pershore High Street toilets last April included the installation of LED lights which will cut energy usage by up to 90% and Dyson integrated taps and hand dryers, which will cut water and energy use by 52%.

Cllr Emma Stokes, responsible for environment on Wychavon District Council, said: "We've known urgent action has been needed to tackle the climate crisis facing the planet for some years now. That's why we introduced our Intelligently Green Plan and we're delighted the rest of the country is now catching up with us.

"We've made considerable progress since 2012 but we know we need to go further and faster and I look forward to setting out our new plan in full early next year." 

Nigel Huddleston MP visits Wychavon Youth Bus
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