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Local authority net zero commitment rises to one-third of the population

9 June 2021

Reaching net zero by 2050 can seem like a daunting task. And while businesses across the world are adjusting their ethos to become more sustainable, more still needs to happen. This is where UK100 comes in.

UK100 recognises the challenges communities face in the strive to reach net zero. The network is the only space for UK locally elected leaders who have dedicated their time to actively work towards a more sustainable future. They pledge to achieve this by switching to 100% clean energy. As the demand for renewables and clean energy continues to grow, so does the list of local councils making the pledge.

Last month five more UK councils joined the ever growing ‘net-zero pledge’. This means one third of the UK population is now represented by councils aiming to reach net-zero targets by 2045. This goal would beat central government targets by five years.

Which councils are part of UK100?

The latest additions to the UK100 Net Zero Pledge include:

  • Brighton & Hove City Council
  • Hammersmith & Fulham Council
  • St Albans City and District Council
  • London Borough of Lambeth
  • Warwick District Council

These councils are joining 52 other local authorities who have already pledged to reach net zero goals by 2045. Last year cities include Bath, Bristol, Edinburgh, Leeds, Leicester, London, Plymouth, Newcastle and Nottingham. As well as the local authorities representing Cornwall, the Cotswolds, Gloucestershire and the West Midlands.

What are the effects of councils going green?

Oxford City Council announced that since joining UK100, the city region has been able to reduce absolute emissions by 40% since 2005. If this continues, the city is on track to reach its net zero goals by 2030.

Although councils pledging to become greener is a step in the right direction, some people continue to have doubts on how promising this is. A poll of 1,061 UK councillors carried out in November 2020 by Icebreaker One revealed that 36% are not confident their council will reach their promised net zero goal. And out of 89% of the respondents to the target ambitions, more than one-third felt they don’t have enough data to set out a pathway to net zero.

Leader of Warwick District Council, Cllr Andrew Day said: ‘We are committed to becoming a net zero carbon organisation and in partnership with our business and communities are seeking to rapidly reduce carbon emissions from across our district. Making this pledge underlines this commitment and reminds us all of the need to think of the future but to act now.’

Where does Smith Bellerby come in?

At Smith Bellerby, we are dedicated to simplifying data gathering and energy admin to help you understand your impact on the environment.

Understanding your energy consumption and waste is crucial in becoming green. Smith Bellerby offers a bespoke net zero strategy designed with your specific needs in mind. We know that everyone’s path to net zero is different, and we believe that understanding your individual energy needs is vital in reaching a green future.

Download our net zero guide to learn how you can kickstart your journey to sustainability.

Pathway to net zero for the public sector
Sophie Wyatt
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