Our plans to tackle climate change

After we declared a climate emergency in February 2019, we set to work.

In order to reduce North Somerset's carbon emissions, we recognise the need to make significant changes to the way we live, work, and govern. We see these changes as a unique opportunity to improve our quality of life. This, in turn, will create an area that’s healthier, better to live in and fairer for everyone.

We need to be ambitious to combat climate change. But we needed your help. From December 2019 to January 2020, we consulted on a draft Climate Change Strategy. In response, 81% agreed with our aim to become carbon neutral by 2030.

From this strategy, we also developed an action plan on how to implement these changes. A refreshed version of the action plan is now available.

Progress reports

Following our Climate Emergency declaration, we agreed to bring a progress report to full council every six months.

Accompanying the report is an annotated version of the Climate Emergency Action Plan. This shows progress against specific actions and slides which summarise the report.

Baseline evidence reports

To assess where we are as an area, we have produced two emissions inventory reports that cover:

  • the council’s own activities
  • emissions for the whole of North Somerset.

We will update the emissions data in these reports will each year. We will use them to watch our progress against our climate emergency target.

A greener Corporate Plan

We also chose the term 'greener' as one of three key themes for our Corporate Plan 2020-24. This means that we will include climate change as a deciding factor in all policy and strategy decisions going forward.

See an update on what we are doing in the video below.

Key changes

Using these documents as a guide, we decided to implement the following changes: 

  • Rewilding and green programme - allowing our green spaces to grow wild and planting more trees
  • Transport - improve paths and roads to encourage more walking and cycling, switch to green energy sources for buses and public transport
  • Reduce, reuse, recycle - improve our waste management strategies and services to send less to landfill
  • Planning and building - update policies to guide sustainable development, and provide incentives for homeowners to make green improvements

To keep up to date with what we're doing, visit our climate news section