Buckingham Town Council declared a Climate Emergency in July 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.
Climate Emergency 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 impact
- Replaced two vehicles with fully electric vans. 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 has been installed in Chandos Park, thanks to funds given by Buckinghamshire County Council’s Local Area Forum to the Town Council. This has proven really popular with park visitors and we hope to secure funding for more water fountains across the town.
Each of the Council’s four committees has reviewed the Climate Emergency Action Plan and added actions within their remits. You can download a copy of the Town Council's Action Plan here. The document will be regularly reviewed at Council Committees and updated with any action taken.
Buckingham's public meeting on Climate Change March 2022
On the 24th March 2022 people from the community of Buckingham attended the Annual Town Meeting which was focused on the climate emergency. People gathered together to express their views of Climate Change and to share ideas and suggestions on how to respond to climate change as a whole community. The public meeting brought together representatives from local environmental organisations and over 65 participants, including Buckingham’s MP Greg Smith and Town and Buckinghamshire Councillors.
Attendees had the opportunity to visit information stands from the Electric Vehicle Centre, Planet Refill, Buckinghamshire Recycles, The Buckingham & Villages Community Board and Canal Society. There was also a small exhibition of artwork from Buckingham School pupils, made from recycled materials.
The Mayor of Buckingham, Councillor Margaret Gateley, opened the meeting, giving a brief on how Buckingham Town Council has declared a Climate Emergency and developed its own action plan to drive the organisation toward carbon neutrality by 2030. The meeting had six tables, each with different discussion topic, with people moving around each table.
A feedback report on the meeting and all of the ideas shared can be viewed here.
What Can I Do?
The following organisations and areas include useful links to help with your own climate change action:
The Carbon Trust provides guidance, webinars, and reports on how businesses can be corporately sustainable, future energy systems, and how to reduce your carbon footprint.
Cycling: Cycling UK has gathered a varied list of community cycling groups and clubs around Bucks, with maps, routes, and resources, encouraging cycling around the county.
Electric Vehicles: Zap Map has created a useful map showing all of the charging points in and the surrounding areas of Buckingham
Food Waste: The Love Food Hate Waste Website is packed with lots of useful advice to help individuals reduce food waste. With tips, recipes, and activities for everyone to get involved with.
Friends of the Earth: The Friends of the Earth organisation is focused on making the environment a better place. With the communities help to prevent mass extinction on millions of species across the globe and the UK
Keep It Clear: In association with Anglian Water, the Keep It Clear campaign provides information on what is and is not suitable to go down our drains. With regular updates and support, find out how you can keep our waters clear.
Recycling: Recycling for Buckinghamshire offers a variety of advice on how to recycle properly, recycle centre locations, preventing and reporting fly-tipping, and learning resources for schools and communities to get involved.
Woodland Trust: The Woodland Trust has launched a tree planting scheme to encourage local schools and communities to plant trees in their areas, the Trust supplying free trees in November and March for schools and communities.
The World Wildlife Federation (WWF) has constructed a questionnaire to help you estimate your carbon footprint, offering advice, and a goal scheme for you to achieve, and reducing your carbon footprint.
Future Learn has some free online learning courses on ‘Climate Change: Solutions created by experts from leading universities and organisations'. This is a great opportunity to explore solutions to this global challenge, including mitigation, adaptation and geo-engineering, which can help avoid the most dangerous climate changes.
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We would love to hear your views on tackling climate change Buckingham so please get in contact at:
Phone: 01280 816426
Buckingham Town Council, Verney Close, Buckingham MK18 1JP
Plastic Free Buckingham
At Full Council on the 12th March 2018 Members unanimously agreed that “Buckingham Town Council to do all it can to encourage the Town of Buckingham, residents and businesses to reduce the use of single use plastics in Buckingham to assist with the reduction of the problems of plastic waste, that is impacting on our Environment and Oceans.” The Council immediately began phasing out the use of single use plastics products at all of its events, offices and community centres and has planned consultation with local businesses and market traders on how we can take the initiative forward.
Why is plastic problematic?
Plastic, in its current form, has only been around for the last 60-70 years, but in that time it has transformed everything from clothing, cooking and catering, to product design, engineering and retailing.
One of the great advantages of many types of plastic is that they’re designed to last – for a very very long time! The hard-wearing qualities of most plastics means that some items can take hundreds of years to biodegrade. Did you know nearly all the plastic ever created still exists in some form today!?!
Scary facts about plastic!
• The world is now producing nearly 300 million tons of plastic every year, half of which is for single use. More than 8 million tons of plastic is dumped into our oceans every year.
• Annually approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide. More than one million bags are used every minute.
• A plastic bag has an average ‘working life’ of 15 minutes – but could last 500 years.
• 14% of all litter comes from beverage containers.
• Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.
Source: Plastic Oceans
We would love to hear residents’ views and suggestions on reducing single use plastic in Buckingham. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any comments, suggestions.