West Sussex County Council announces plan to halve carbon emissions

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A PLEDGE to halve West Sussex County Council’s carbon emissions by 2025 has been announced by the authority.

The council has drawn up a list of new goals to improve “sustainability” throughout the organisation, with an eye on reducing the carbon and waste it produces and driving down costs.

The new strategy is called Building a Sustainable Future.

It aims to build on strategies which reduced more than 10 per cent of carbon dioxide emissions from council properties last year.

The council said this equated to £145,000 in savings.

A spokesman for the council said the 50 per cent cut would be achieved by introducing new carbon budgets.

All services will have a responsibility for managing their carbon from travel, purchasing of goods and services and the way buildings are used.

The strategy also includes:

Targets for re-using or recycling 70 per cent of all the council’s highway construction waste, increasing this to 80 per cent by 2015.

Assessments of every council service for threats posed by severe weather and, by 2014, a new flood risk strategy is to be drawn up for the county.

Examining ways of managing water consumption and reducing paper use.

A Trees for Shade scheme, offered to local schools, council parks, gardens and communities so they can plant new trees, is already underway with funding from Southern Water.

Deputy leader Lionel Barnard said: “By getting our own house in order today we can benefit our residents, our economy and our environment tomorrow.

“We need to move beyond sustainability being considered as a separate issue by a few key people, to ‘sustainability’ being central to the way everybody works.”