Climate and nature emergency in South Gloucestershire
South Gloucestershire Council declared a climate emergency on 17 July 2019.
This means that the global climate is in a state of breakdown and this is an emergency.
We need to urgently prepare for the local impacts of climate change, reduce our carbon emissions and protect and restore nature.
You can read our original Climate Emergency Declaration.
As part of this work, we recognise the nature emergency which has several causes including climate change. Responding to the nature emergency is a crucial part of our response to the Climate Emergency.
We are responding to the Climate and Nature Emergency.
- Our pledge and progress
- Monitoring our greenhouse gas emissions and renewable energy
- Climate and nature
- Nature emergency (or ecological emergency)
- Working with others
- Our green infrastructure and nature recovery action plan
- Local nature action plans
- Climate and nature emergency community engagement group
- Local strategic partnership
- Climate and nature emergency university advisory group
Our pledge and progress
We have pledged to:
- provide the leadership to enable South Gloucestershire to become carbon neutral by 2030
- set out an area wide Climate Emergency Action Plan each year until 2030
We have signed up to:
In January 2022, our Climate Emergency Action Plan was scored alongside 328 local authority climate action plans. South Gloucestershire was ranked in the top 10 plans in the country.
You can read our:
- Climate Emergency Strategy
- Climate Emergency Action Plan – year 3 (2022 to 2023)
- Cabinet report for year 3 (13 December 2021)
- Climate Emergency Action Plan – year 2 (2021 to 2022)
- Cabinet report for year 2 (7 December 2020)
- Climate Emergency Action Plan – year 1 (2020 to 2021)
- Cabinet report for year 1 (27 April 2020)
- carbon emissions baseline report
The West of England Combined Authority (WECA) also declared a climate emergency on 19 July 2019, with a target of net zero emissions by 2030.
We will work with WECA and the other unitary authorities to reach this target.
Monitoring our greenhouse gas emissions and renewable energy
These dashboards help monitor our progress towards becoming a carbon neutral area.
You can also view our Net Zero Dashboard for 2022.
- Area-wide carbon dioxide emissions for 2019*: 1,137,400 tonnes CO2 or 1,137.4 kilotonnes (kt) CO2
- Area-wide emissions per person for 2019*: 4 tonnes CO2
- Council own emissions for 2020/21: 9,562 tonnes CO2
- Total current energy demand including electricity, heat and transport (2019): 6410 GWh
- Renewable energy generated in the area (2020/21): 263 GWh
- Proportion of local energy demand met by renewable energy generated locally: 4%
This year’s targets
- Area-wide carbon dioxide emissions target value for 2021/22 is 1148.16 kilotonnes of CO2
- Council own emissions target value for 2021/22 is 8,338.40 tonnes CO2
- Proportion of current local energy demand to be generated from renewable energy installations is 13.33%
Climate and nature
We have been working with our strategic partners and the wider community to tackle climate change for over a decade.
This includes reducing emissions and tackling the local impact of a changing climate, including increased heat, drought and risk of flooding.
We have worked on:
• street lighting
• transport infrastructure schemes
• flood prevention schemes
Nature emergency (or ecological emergency)
We know that climate change is having a significant impact on the health of nature and ecosystems. Some councils are also declaring an ecological (nature) emergency.
We feel that the nature emergency is a critical part of the wider environmental crisis.
For this reason, we have decided to take an approach that tackles the nature emergency together with the climate emergency.
Working with others
We will work with residents, businesses, and partners to:
• reduce carbon emissions
• build resilience to the local impact of a changing climate
• restore nature
Our green infrastructure and nature recovery action plan
We have produced a strategy and action plan to protect and restore nature.
This plan includes action to improve our green infrastructure to provide healthier, greener and more resilient places where people and nature thrive.
Green infrastructure helps our communities adapt and be resilient to the changing climate by providing shade, cooling, water storage and natural drainage.
Local nature action plans
We have produced guidance about local nature action plans to support town and parish councils. We have also produced a local nature action plan field guide for use by town and parish councils.
This will help them to understand biodiversity and build and submit their own plan to help.
Climate and nature emergency community engagement group
We have started a climate and nature emergency community engagement group. This is run jointly with CVS South Gloucestershire (Community and Voluntary Services).
The group is open to everyone in South Gloucestershire and meets quarterly.
You can sign up to our climate change mailing list to get group information.
You can also email firstname.lastname@example.org
Find out about our network of groups acting on the climate and nature emergency.
Local strategic partnership
We work with major organisations, including:
- Business West
- University of the West of England
- Avon and Somerset Fire Service
- CVS South Gloucestershire
- Avon Wildlife Trust
- South Gloucestershire and Stroud College
You can find out more about this partnership and what they are doing by visiting our area our future.
Climate and nature emergency university advisory group
This group provides independent technical advice to the local strategic partnership and council on how to respond to the climate and nature emergency.
You can read a review of our performance so far.
The Local Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report monitors greenhouse gas emissions from our buildings, estate, and activities. It also includes the renewable energy that we generate directly.