Our Green Achievements

Recently the Council, along with 181 other District Councils, have been reviewed by an organisation called Climate Emergency UK with regard to their Climate Change Strategies. 

We are very pleased to advise that Blaby District ranked 36 out of 181 with a score of 56%. This is above the average score of 43%. 

Some of the steps we have taken to achieve this score are listed below. 

Climate Change Strategy and Carbon Neutral Action Plan

In 2020 we published our ambitions to be carbon neutral as an organisation by 2030 and support the district in becoming carbon neutral by 2050.

Calculated our Carbon Footprint

Since 2019, the council has cut its carbon emissions by almost a quarter (23%). The latest Carbon Footprint for 2020/21 has shown a 13% reduction in The Council’s carbon emissions on the previous year. This is great news but the latest UN report on Climate Change makes it clear we must take every opportunity to improve on this.

EV Charging infrastructure

We have successfully commissioned 24 EV charge-points in four of our car parks in Blaby and Narborough to facilitate residents who cannot install home chargers. This was funded by the Government’s on-street residential charge point scheme. Estimated first quarter (Oct – Dec) carbon savings of 2577kg CO2e.

Switched to Green Electricity

This has been achieved partly by switching to 100% renewable electricity and a reduction in fleet mileage (business miles in particular).  In October 2020 we switched to a green energy tariff which now means 100% of our electricity is generated by renewable energy such as wind and solar. 

Carbon Literacy

Engagement with residents, communities and businesses on climate change will play a key role if we are to cut our carbon emissions as demanded of us by science. As a council, if we are to engage effectively we need to lead by example and as such we have committed to becoming a Carbon Literate organisation.

Blaby Switch and Save

In its first year of direct marketing (2020) this scheme saved residents, who switched to a 100% green tariff, on average £162/year. Over 500 residents switched saving 436 tCO2/year (equivalent to 238 cars off the road). The annual carbon saving since starting the scheme in 2018 is 512tCO2e/year.

Fuel poverty and improving the energy efficiency of homes

We have successfully bid for government funding under the Local Authority Delivery Schemes and Sustainable Warmth Competition to reduce energy bills and carbon emissions for the least efficient hard to heat homes by installing measures such as insulation, heat pumps and solar panels. We are working hard to deliver this through partnership working with our Housing Associations and neighbouring authorities.

ECO 3 Blaby Help to Heat Homes

Approximately 30 properties have benefited from cavity wall and loft insulation between September and October 2021. This amounts to around = 26 tCO2e/year. This project will continue to see energy efficient measures installed on homes most at risk of fuel poverty and will move to ECO4 in June /July which will see an expansion of measures to include solid wall insulation, low carbon heating (Heat pumps) & smart meters.

Fewer Commuter miles

New ways of working post-Covid means staff are able to work from home whilst still delivering services. The reduction in commuting during the height of the pandemic in 2020/21 saved around 162tCO2e. If occupancy levels return to around 2/5 pre-Covid levels then this could save around 80tCO2e/year going forward.

Switching to energy efficient lighting

We are gradually switching to LED lighting across all council buildings which will reduce energy use and save around 10tCO2e/year once all former lighting is replaced.

Scope 3 Emissions (purchased goods and services)

We have commissioned a review of our Scope 3 carbon emissions which relate to all purchased goods and services. These have reduced from 7870tCO2e/year in 2019/20 to 5528tCO2e in 2020/21 which is a reduction of 30%. Everything we buy as an organisation or an individual has a carbon footprint and it’s essential that we gain an accurate picture of this in order to tackle and reduce that impact. There is much more work to do as a Council and by the Community to address these indirect emissions but gaining an understanding of that impact is the first stage in this process.

On-site renewable energy generation

We have carried site surveys with a view to installing solar panels on some of our buildings to generate our own renewable electricity and reduce our dependence on grid supplied energy. This will reduce carbon emissions, save money and support the national ambition to be carbon neutral by 2050.

Solar Together

We are working with iChoosr who have previously delivered the Blaby Switch and Save to launch Solar Together Leicestershire this summer. This is a Countywide scheme lead by Blaby District Council to give residents and businesses the chance to generate their own clean electricity at a highly competitive price. By installing solar panels and producing renewable electricity will support our region’s shared ambition to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050.

Low carbon vehicle fleet

Working in partnership with The Energy Saving Trust and Midlands Energy Hub we are developing pathways to move to a zero carbon vehicle fleet by 2030 through a combination of low carbon fuels (HVO) and ultimately electrification.

Engagement with residents, community groups and businesses

We are committed to support the District in becoming net zero as we recognise that this cannot be achieved without a huge collective effort. We have established a Community Engagement Strategy which sets out how we intend to support and engage with residents, schools, community groups, parish councils and businesses across the district in their own net zero ambitions.

Blaby scores highest amongst Leicestershire Districts for its Climate Strategy and Action Plan

The organisation “Climate Emergency UK” formed to collate council climate emergency declarations. Between June and December 2021 the organisation sought to review council responses to these declarations, scoring councils on their published plans and offering a “right to reply”. 409 councils were scored. Of the 181 District Councils in the UK, Blaby District Council came 36th, with a total score of 56%. The average District score is 43% and Blaby was the top District Council in Leicestershire.

Last updated 5 September 2022
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