Blackpool seeks views on ambitious plan to tackle the climate crisis

Posted on Wednesday 22nd September 2021

Blackpool Council have published a Climate Emergency Action Plan setting out how the council and town can aim for net zero carbon emissions by 2030.  

The plan follows recommendations from Blackpool’s climate assembly earlier this year, and uses recent studies conducted by climate experts the Carbon Trust and Atkins as an evidence base. The aim of going carbon neutral by 2030 is a challenging 20 years ahead of the UK government’s target of getting to net zero by 2050. 

A consultation exercise is set to be launched on the report, to allow all residents to have their say on the proposals. A survey will run until 20 October so that residents can put forwards their views, building on the input of the climate assembly. The action plan and consultation findings will then be formally presented to council in November 2021. 

Blackpool’s share of emissions is reported to be smaller than other areas but a greater proportion than the Lancashire average comes from domestic energy use, mainly from gas and electricity. 

Emissions from industry mostly come from general commercial activity, but food and beverage production also generate a significant proportion. Transport emissions have remained largely unchanged over the last 15 years, with 74% of carbon coming from petrol and diesel cars and the rest from goods vehicles. 

The declaration of the climate emergency in June 2019 attracted cross party support in Blackpool.  

Key areas where action will be taken to address the climate challenge include: 

  • Buildings and the built environment 

  • Transport, getting around and digital 

  • Cleansing, food, water and waste 

  • Community leadership, communication and involvement 

  • Building knowledge, capacity and financial resources 

Proposed actions include a wide range of initiatives such as: exploring the development of a solar farm at Blackpool Airport; moving to all-electric buses; and implementing an ‘Energy from Waste’ facility, which would turn waste materials into green gas. 

Some key actions in the plan are already underway, such as retrofitting council houses with enhanced insulation, replacing existing street lighting with LEDs and implementing a tree strategy programme. 

The council document states that the climate actions are not only about helping the planet, but about improving lives in Blackpool. As well as greener homes and more green spaces, the move to a greener economy could create up to 4000 jobs across the Fylde Coast. 

Blackpool Council’s Climate Emergency Steering Group, made up of staff from all council services and companies, will meet every three months to ensure progress is made. A Climate Action Partnership, made up of councillors, residents, young citizens, climate experts, businesses and other relevant parties, will also meet twice a year to check on progress and facilitate projects.  

The council’s Strategy and Climate Team will look for ways of funding and delivering the new projects laid out in the action plan. However, the report outlines that to reduce emissions across Lancashire by 68% by 2030, £15 billion of extra funding will be needed, so further resources from government will be essential. 

In her introduction to the report, Cllr Lynn Williams, Leader of Blackpool Council, says: 

“We are all guilty of taking for granted the systems on which we build our lives, ecological and man-made, natural and designed. The climate crisis challenges both.  

“We can and will adapt, with innovative ways of thinking and a spirit of co-operation. It will take time, hard work, and we will all need to learn to change, but our effort now can transform the lives of future generations.” 

Cllr Jane Hugo, Blackpool Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change, said: 

“This action plan is a significant milestone and a crucial step towards Blackpool tackling the climate crisis.  

“Recommendations from the climate assembly have led directly to 31 of the actions in this plan and I would like to thank members of the assembly for their valuable contribution. 

“The assembly process ensured members of the assembly were representative of the whole Blackpool population, and that is vital because making Blackpool a greener place affects us all. 

“The climate emergency calls for immediate action.  Now we have a plan in place I am eager for us all to concentrate our efforts into putting the actions into practice. The impact of these changes will not only affect us, but generations to come.” 

“I would urge everyone in Blackpool to take an interest in the report, give their feedback during the consultation and continue to get involved and inspired.” 

Have your say on the climate action plan by visiting our Consultations page.  

You can read the full Climate Emergency Action Plan at on our Climate Action Plan page

Posted on Wednesday 22nd September 2021

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