Conservative environmental strategy passed by Council

Significant measures to protect the environment and address climate change have been agreed by Bath and North East Somerset Council. A meeting of B&NES Council last night voted to approve a 17-year strategy proposed by the Conservative administration which will ensure the sustainable development of the region for the future.

The Sustainable Community Strategy sets out the ways in which the Council must work to ensure an environmentally sustainable future for the area, whilst at the same time encouraging a thriving economy and promoting safe and healthy communities.

Some of the key elements of the Sustainable Community Strategy include:

Working towards reducing the Council’s own carbon emissions by 30% by 2014 as part of the Carbon Management Plan.
Establishing the ‘B&NES Environmental Sustainability Partnership’ and ‘Climate Change Initiative’ to ensure the B&NES area, and not just the Council, works towards cutting its carbon emissions by at least 34% by 2020.
Improving recycling rates yet further and working towards the ‘Zero Waste Strategy’, with the goal of virtually eliminating the need for land-fill.
Ensuring the B&NES area is prepared for the effects of climate change, including flood mitigation planning.
Continuing to develop plans to improve public transport and developing longer-term plans for ‘village hub schemes’, bringing vital services closer to where people live and reducing the need for car travel.

Proposing the Strategy, B&NES Conservative Leader Cllr Francine Haeberling said:

“This Strategy sets out a comprehensive framework which will ensure an environmentally sustainable future for the B&NES area. The plans will mean that environmental sustainability runs as a golden thread through everything the Council does, whilst at the same time balancing this with strong economic development for the future.

“Conservatives in Bath and North East Somerset are setting ambitious environmental goals for our region and are ensuring the Council leads the way on tackling climate change. These plans will ensure the Council not only reduces its own carbon emissions, but also develops plans to help local communities and businesses reduce their emissions. These are ambitious targets, but achievable ones which the Council must strive to deliver.”