How well each authority in Leicestershire is tackling climate change from best to worst – with advice in the bottom 10 nationally

A Leicestershire council’s green action plan has seen red flags raised with it named and shamed among the worst nationally.

A new study into each region’s plans to tackle climate change has revealed who in Leicestershire has the best – and worst – action plan.

And while some authorities have been praised for their plans – noted on things such as reducing carbon footprint to encourage biodiversity to support sustainable travel – others lag worryingly far behind their peers.

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Climate Emergency UK, a charity that helps local authorities tackle climate change, analyzed and scored the climate action plans of all councils across the country.

A climate action plan sets out a council’s commitment and proposals to address the global climate emergency.

These plans were assessed by the charity against a number of criteria, including whether the climate actions are costed and have a clear purpose; whether local residents are engaged; and whether the plan goes beyond reducing the council’s own emissions.

Of all the authorities in the area with an active action plan, Leicester City Council had the highest score at 71%, but Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council had the lowest score at just 16%, making it the eighth-lowest scoring district council in the country.

Nationally, district councils averaged 43%, while single-tier authorities such as Leicester City Council averaged 50%.

A borough council spokesperson said he did not believe the results accurately reflected ‘the progress [the council has] taken in the fight against climate change”, as it only measures published actions.

They said: “Since the declaration of a climate emergency in 2019 and the publication of our climate change strategy, work has been carried out across the board to achieve our 2030 net zero target.

“Hinckley and Bosworth have a senior member and officer dedicated to this. We are absolutely committed to continuing to implement the actions set out in our climate change strategy.”

Since 2019, the council has put in place a number of measures, including the trial of an electric garbage truck, the installation of electric charging stations, the change of lights in municipal buildings to LEDs, the planting of hundreds of trees and working with businesses, schools and homeowners to encourage energy efficiency. and less carbon emissions.

Climate Emergency UK said it would carry out a second assessment which will assess advice on the action they are taking.

Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council received no points in the following categories:

  • measure and set emissions targets
  • setting out the co-benefits of the described actions which could include social, health or economic benefits
  • diversity and inclusion, seeking to identify and support those who will be most affected by climate change, and how councils, residents and businesses should work together
  • ecological emergency, considering whether the plan responds to the threat of climate change on nature, habitats and wildlife.

The council scored above average for community engagement and communication.

Leicester City Deputy Mayor for the Environment, Councilor Adam Clarke, said he was pleased that the city’s work to tackle climate change had been recognized and reflected in their high score.

Deputy Mayor Adam Clark at Western Park

He added that the council would not become complacent about the “enormous challenge” ahead.

He said: “We are very aware that it will always be a huge challenge to help the city become carbon neutral by 2030.

“We have commissioned a roadmap report, which should be available soon, outlining the steps we need to take to achieve this ambitious goal.

“In addition, we will continue to develop and implement programs such as the new St Margaret’s Bus Station, our Bus Service Improvement Plan and our £25million refurbishment program to reduce the footprint. carbon and energy costs for 93 schools and other council-owned buildings. all of which are key elements of our climate emergency action plan.

Leicester City Council scored significantly above average for governance, development and finance, looking at whether the plan is headed by a senior executive under the supervision of a committee or cabinet member and is incorporated into all decisions, if net zero targets include annual targets and cover the whole area rather than just the board and if the plan is fully costed and funded; and mitigation and adaptations, defining the implications of climate change on the region, service-specific strategies for decarbonization, such as waste management services, housing and transport.

The board also earned full points for community engagement, but no points for diversity and inclusion.

Blaby District Council also had reason to celebrate, scoring the highest score among districts in the county at 56%. It scored high marks in the Engagement and Integration, Emissions Measurement and Target Setting, and Community Engagement sections.

Councilor Terry Richardson, Leader of Blaby District Council, said: ‘It is fantastic to be recognized for our work by Climate Emergency UK in their council climate scorecards. We are proud of the progress we have already made to reduce the carbon footprint in the district, and this is just the beginning.

“Climate change is a threat to everyone and we must give it the priority it deserves. Our ambitions are clear and we will continue to work towards our commitment to a carbon neutral council by 2030 and a carbon neutral neighborhood by 2050.”

The council received the lowest score for diversity and inclusion and ecological urgency.

Leicestershire councils green scorecards – from best to worst

  1. Leicester City Council – 71%
  2. Blaby District Council – 56%
  3. Leicestershire County Council – 48%
  4. North West Leicestershire District Council – 43%
  5. Harborough District Council – 42%
  6. Oadby and Wigston Borough Council – 31%
  7. Charnwood Borough Council – 21%
  8. Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council – 16%

According to Climate Emergency UK, Melton Borough Council and Rutland County Council did not have active plans at the time of the study and therefore could not be scored.

The full list of council results is available on the Climate Emergency website.

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