Cabinet to consider next steps for tackling climate change in Wiltshire

Cabinet to consider next steps for tackling climate change in Wiltshire

At its meeting on Tuesday 1 February, Conservative led Wiltshire Council's Cabinet will look at the next steps for tackling climate change and improving the natural environment in the county, as it seeks to approve the Climate Strategy and the Green & Blue Infrastructure Strategy, Wiltshire's Natural Environment Plan.

There were more than 1,300 responses from residents, businesses and organisations across Wiltshire in the recent Climate Strategy consultation and Wiltshire's Natural Environment Plan consultation, held between 1 September and 17 October 2021.

The Climate Strategy sets out the next five years of the council's journey to becoming a carbon neutral county, covering seven themes: transport; homes and the built environment; natural environment, food and farming; energy; green economy; waste; and carbon neutral council. The strategy also features high-level objectives for each of the themes. As part of the consultation, respondents were asked whether they agreed or disagreed with the objectives. Most people agreed with the objectives, with 90% of respondents 'agreeing' or 'strongly agreeing' to all but five of the objectives.

Wiltshire's Natural Environment Plan sets out the future for supporting and enhancing Wiltshire's natural environmental assets for the benefit of people, nature and to help address climate change.

Conservative Cllr Nick Botterill, Cabinet Member for Climate Change, said: 

We had some very valuable responses to these two consultations, and this feedback have been thoroughly analysed, with officers providing detailed reports, which we'll consider in Cabinet.

If approved by Cabinet and then Full Council, we'll adopt both the Climate Strategy and Wiltshire's Natural Environment Plan, and their principles and objectives will be weaved into everything we do as a council. Using these strategies as a framework, services are drawing up delivery plans to help us to reduce carbon emissions both as a council and across the county.

We have already reduced our own carbon emissions as a council by 80% since 2013/14, but we have more to do. If Cabinet agrees to these two strategies it will be another huge step forward for our plans to tackle climate change and support the natural environment in Wiltshire.

If Cabinet agrees to take the revised strategies forward, they will then go to Full Council on 15 February for final approval and adoption.

To read the Cabinet reports, people should go to wiltshire.gov.uk/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=141&MId=13780

by Charlie Monro,