Rother District Council has pledged to become carbon neutral by 2030, after becoming the latest local authority to declare a climate emergency (September 2019).
Introducing the motion, cabinet member for environment and transport Kathryn Field (Lib Dem) said: We as councillors and the council are in a very good position for influencing the rest of the community. We are role models and we can take people with us.
“The government has a target of becoming carbon neutral by 2050, we believe that actually we should aspire to being carbon neutral by 2030. We have been told we have 11 years before the damage to the climate of this planet is irreversible.
“I think 2030 is a very reasonable target and it should be at the forefront of our minds to work hard for that goal.
“We can’t do this on our own. We must involve the community, we must take them with us and not do it to them.
“I’m hoping that in the new year we can have a conference in Bexhill to talk to people, get their ideas and in particular speak with young people. It is after all their futures.”
“It is absolutely imperative that every single one of us takes responsibility, in whatever way we can, to reduce carbon emission and to take care of our world. Our environmental conservation counts.”
Rother District Council will
- Declare a ‘climate emergency’.
- Pledge to do what is within our powers, to make Rother District carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account both production and consumption emissions.
- Call on the Government to provide the powers and resources necessary for Rother District to achieve the target of becoming carbon neutral by 2030, and to implement best practice methods to limit global warming to 1.5ºC.
- Report to full Council within six months with an Action Plan, outlining how the Council will address this emergency. The Carbon Neutral 2030 Action Plan will detail the leadership role Rother District will take in promoting community, public, business and other Council partnerships to achieve this commitment throughout the District. The Action Plan will also outline adequate staff time and resources to undertake the actions to achieve the target.
- To investigate all possible sources of external funding and match funding to support this commitment.
- Identify citizens across Rother who are climate champions for their communities and to use them to inform on ideas to implement locally.
Rother Council have identified the following priorities:
- Becoming a smart digital district
- Green Economy
- Improving air quality
- Dealing with waste in more sustainable way
- Sustainable energy production
- Protecting biodiversity
- Construction and existing buildings
- Environmentally friendly council
Link to Bexhill Observer
- Replace your boiler with a newer, more efficient model.
- Fit better controls and use them to make sure your boiler only provides heat where and when you want it.
- Switch to a cheaper or lower carbon fuel or technology. Find out about renewable technologies for generating electricity and heat.
- Make any insulation and draught-proofing improvements that you can.
- Use chemical inhibitors to help maintain central heating system efficiency.
If your home improvement work requires scaffolding, such as a loft conversion, this would be an ideal time to install solar panels. Scaffolding is a significant part of the solar installation costs, so combining it with other works could make them much more cost-effective. Solar panels are most effective on south-facing roofs at a pitch of around 30 degrees.
There are various other factors to consider when thinking about whether your home set up works and how best to maximise the installation. For more information on installing renewable energy system at home, see here .
Energy Saving Trust
Lighting accounts for 15 per cent of a typical household’s electricity bill. It’s good time to consider changing to LED bulbs.
LEDs are the most efficient light bulb on the market and have made significant advancements since their early days of low quality lighting. They are available with varying degrees of brightness, colours, and ‘colour temperatures’ – from warm white to cool white in appearance – and can suit almost all light fittings. Although the cost of bulbs is coming down, it can sometimes appear prohibitive, so consider the most used lights throughout your home as a first step.
Statistics from Energy Saving Trust
Make sure your extension is insulated to Building Regulations. You could Consider having the rest of your home to insulated as well. If your home has cavity walls, a layer of insulation can be blown into the cavity.
If you have solid walls (usually homes built before 1920), you can have either internal or external insulation added. Applying external insulation at the same time as your extension would ensure the exterior finish to the main building matches the extension, improving the aesthetic of your home.
External insulation will also make those cold rooms in your home warmer and, so long as sufficient ventilation is maintained, it can help alleviate many causes of damp and mould. Furthermore, solid wall insulation could save around £225 a year from the heating bills of a typical gas-fuelled semi-detached home. Savings could be significantly higher in detached properties, around £375 per year in a typical gas-fuelled detached home.
Statistics from Energy Saving Trust
Planning your new bathroom is a great time to think about being more efficient and reducing water usage throughout the home. There are many different types of shower head that aerate the water thereby reducing water usage without a negative impact on your shower experience. A water efficient shower head could save a four person household (e.g. a family of four or even a shared student flat) around £40 a year on gas for water heating, as well as a further £55 a year on water bills if using a water meter. You should also look for low-flush toilets – saving at least one litre of water per use.
If you’re adding extra heating to your bathroom, such as a towel rail or underfloor heating, make sure it is installed with easy to use, accessible controls, we’ll show you how to use heating controls so your being efficient as possible.