Buckingham Town Council declared a Climate Emergency in July last year (2019). Since then the Council has been busy investigating actions the Town Council can take, as well as looking for ways to work with partners to make a difference.
The Council has set the following objectives:
- Energy – to reduce energy demand, improve energy efficiency and convert to renewable, low or zero carbon technologies for energy and heat.
- Transport – to promote walking, cycling and public transport. Accelerating the move to Council owned electric vehicles.
- Food & Land – to promote sustainable land management, including tree planting to help absorb carbon & water.
- Economy, Housing & Waste – to support the local economy to ensure existing and new homes are climate resilient whilst reducing, re using and recycling materials and ongoing resources e.g. water
- Community Engagement – to engage local people in accelerating their own responses and building resilience to ongoing climate impacts.
The Council has already:
- Replaced one vehicle with an electric van. This has proved a big success; with vehicles only moving within the town, this has reduced the use of diesel considerably, and also means we have a quiet vehicle to use in the cemetery when needed.
- Updating the Town Council’s lights in Chandos Park with LED lights, reducing the power used
- Plans are in place to install solar panels on the Buckingham Community Centre and Lace Hill Sports and Community Centre
- Ensuring Town Council events are free of single-use plastics
- A water bottle refill station will be installed in Chandos Park in April, thanks to funds given by Buckinghamshire County Council’s Local Area Forum to the Town Council
Each of the Council’s four committees has reviewed the Climate Emergency Action Plan and added actions within their remits. 44 Actions have now been agreed and are published on the Town Council’s website
The Actions will include:
- Hosting one public meeting a year to promote ideas and opportunities for the town
- Offset carbon emissions by planting more trees (whenever possible)
- Buy local, fair-trade, recycled, plastic free, repairable and sustainable products wherever possible/available.
- Review of grass verges and hedges to identify areas to be trimmed less and later in the year to support more wildflowers and insects
- Asking grant applicants to consider the impact on the environment of their project and any steps they can take to mitigate them.
Councilor Ruth Newell, Chair of the Council’s Environment Committee, said:
“I’m really pleased that Buckingham Town Council is taking the lead in recognising that we need to take actions locally to address climate change. We look forward to working with local groups, as well as reviewing our own operations to take immediate action, and also to plan for longer term changes, such as the vehicles we use. There are so many no-cost and low-cost options available that when combined with the funding available to community and other organisations we can start to play an increased role in combating climate change.”
- For enquiries please contact Paul Hodson at Buckingham Town Council on 01280 816426, firstname.lastname@example.org.