Solar panels were installed at The GuildhallSimon Lock

A report released on Monday highlighted Cambridge City Council’s progress in cutting carbon emissions from its operations, showing a 25.2% reduction over four years.

The steady fall through the period 2014/15 to 2018/19 is due both to the council’s actions and a shift in national electricity production from coal-fired power stations towards renewable energy.

This is well ahead of the council’s reduction target, which had hoped for a 15% drop in emissions by 2021. The reduction is also in line with a government target of reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050, announced in June this year.

Since the establishment of a Climate Change Fund in 2008, the council has spent over £1.5m on measures to limit carbon output within its operations, with further funds earmarked for future use. These measures have included the installation of solar panels on larger council properties including the Guildhall and improving energy efficiency in council properties by fitting low-energy LED lighting and better managing energy use.

Steps have also been taken by the council as part of its Climate Change Strategy to support the city’s residents, businesses and visitors in reducing their carbon emissions.

These have involved, for instance, encouraging the use of environmentally friendly transport with the installation of charging points for electric taxis and the improvement of bicycle parking provision in the city centre.



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In February, Cambridge’s Labour-controlled council was one of many across the country to declare a ‘climate emergency’, adopting the more ambitious aim of reaching carbon neutrality by 2030, a move urged by climate activists and recently adopted as Labour Party policy.

Cllr Rosy Moore, Executive Councillor for Climate Change, Environment and City Centre, is clear in the report about the need to further reduce carbon emissions, saying, “It is essential that residents, businesses and other large organisations work together with us to make Cambridge net zero carbon as soon as possible,” she said.

“We would like to thank residents, businesses and other organisations in Cambridge for all their efforts to reduce their own carbon emissions. We would also urge everyone in the city to think about how to go further in cutting emissions, including by consuming less heat, less meat, and less fossil-fuelled transport.”

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