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Council to discuss long-awaited climate change strategy

PUBLISHED: 06:48 22 September 2020 | UPDATED: 06:48 22 September 2020

A Norfolk council with the third-highest district carbon footprint in the country is set to discuss its plans to reduce emissions. Photo Getty/iStock

A Norfolk council with the third-highest district carbon footprint in the country is set to discuss its plans to reduce emissions. Photo Getty/iStock

S.Piyaset

A Norfolk council with the third-highest district carbon footprint in the country is set to discuss its plans to reduce emissions - after refusing several times to declare a state of climate emergency.

West Norfolk Council leader Brian Long. Photo: Matthew UsherWest Norfolk Council leader Brian Long. Photo: Matthew Usher

King’s Lynn and West Norfolk Borough Council (KLWNBC) will discuss a scheme to reduce its impact on the environment at a meeting of its cabinet.

Senior councillors will review the authority’s climate change policy at a meeting on Tuesday, September 22 - but the steps to combat pollution will only address the council’s emissions, not the 550sq mile district as a whole.

West Norfolk council emitted 4,632 tonnes of CO2 in 2018-19.

It comes after the council leader Brian Long was criticised for scrapping the portfolio role with responsibility for the environment, following the resignation of the cabinet member holding the post.

READ MORE: ‘Disappointing’ - council leader planning to scrap climate role criticised

A report published ahead of the meeting said the council would seek to reduce its impact “on the local and global environment, by demonstrating clear leadership and providing quality services, tackling pollution, reducing waste and greenhouse gas emissions and saving energy and water.”

Officers said the aim of the new policy - which will be followed by the publication of a strategy and specific plan of action - would be to “mitigate and adapt to climate change” by cutting emissions and “improve our resilience to future climate predictions, conserve our natural resources, enhance biodiversity and further improve the quality of life and the sense of well-being for all residents”.

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The council says it will focus on setting an example to the district as a “community leader”, with work on reducing wider emissions in the district, which has 64,000 households, would be through local plan climate change policy.

READ MORE: Councillor steps down from senior role saying: ‘I’m feeling my age’

The policy aims to:

• Support local communities to address climate change.

• Commit to reducing CO2 emissions from council activities to net-zero by 2050,

• Encourage sectors in the district to mitigate against climate change and publicise their efforts,

• Influence the government to help address the local impact,

• And support more provisions for agile working and green travel.

The council also wants to reduce energy usage, save money, develop new income streams, improve health and wellbeing, enhance its housing stock and environmental quality, and address fuel poverty, traffic congestion, and air pollution.

READ MORE: Council leader told to apologise to residents for ‘inflammatory schadenfreude’


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