Climate change - Luton Council

 

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Luton Council: Taking action on climate change

With its declaration of a climate emergency, we've put the need to confront climate change as an important priority. To tackle the climate emergency, we've pledged to ensure that Luton is a carbon neutral town by 2040, ten years ahead of the government’s own target.

Meeting this ambitious objective will need everyone in Luton to be involved. Therefore, a town wide engagement and debate on the issue is needed. We need to:

  • ​know what the people of Luton think
  • listen to ideas concerning the measures you want to see implemented in the town
  • understand the scale and pace of change that is required
The aim is to work towards a Luton citizens assembly on climate change later in 2020. The format of the assembly will be kept under review in light of the current Covid-19 emergency and social distancing rules.

You can get involved by letting us know your ideas and suggestions through:

  1. Luton – Let’s Talk, the council’s engagement hub
  2. emailing us on myclimate@luton.gov.uk

Keep up to date with our action on climate change by checking our Facebook and Twitter pages or by subscribing to our e-L​uton digital newsletter.

Councillors are encouraged use the LGA’s “Acting on Climate Change Workbook” to guide them on the drivers of the changing climate, the role of local councils in tackling climate change and the opportunities that emerge from taking action.

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Where we have got to so far?

July 2019
Luton Council announced its intention for the town to be carbon neutral ahead of the government’s target of 2050.

September 2019
Established the cross party Climate Change Executive Advisory Board, a climate change sub-group of the council’s Executive. The group was tasked with driving climate change activity within the council and across the town.

October 2019
The Climate Change Executive Advisory Board outlined recommendations on climate change policy to the council’s Executive. These included establishing a series of community engagement events on Luton’s approach.

January 2020
We published our climate change report. Commissioned by the council and conducted by the Antithesis Group, the report:

  • ​highlighted the emissions profiles of Luton and the council
  • discussed the degree to which the town’s emissions can be influenced with regional or national bodies
  • provided an evidence base for future action plans relating to climate change

A copy of this report can be found here: Luton climate action plan support.

A draft climate change action plan for the council was also published. The document outlined initial areas where we'll focussing such as:

  • exploring cutting carbon emissions from our operations
  • increasing carbon sequestration efforts
​You can read the climate change action plan here.

We declared a climate emergency and agreed our next steps to ensure Luton is carbon neutral by 2040.

February 2020
A climate change forum​ was undertaken on 11 February 2020 at the Hat Factory, Luton. Attendees were briefed on the challenge ahead by a series of guest speakers, followed by two engaging workshops.

These workshops enabled attendees to suggest ideas and actions that should be taken in Luton to tackle climate change.

March to May 2020
Despite the widespread impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on all our lives, we have continued to take action in our commitment to deliver a carbon neutral Luton by 2040, expanding our climate change team in April 2020 to ensure that target can be met. 

A review of the Climate Change Action Plan will be conducted in April 2020 by our climate change team. The review will consider the timing and phasing of some initiatives due to impact of COVID-19.

In response to feedback received at February’s climate change forum, the climate change team is seeking to deliver a carbon literacy training package to council staff. Such training will develop an understanding of:

  • the science behind climate change
  • a local council’s role in tackling climate change
  • what a zero carbon council would look like
  • tailored actions that can be undertaken by each council service as part of a climate change action plan
 

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