Have your say on plans to tacke climate change and make Stevenage carbon-neutral

After recognising a climate change emergency, Stevenage Borough Council has released a draft strateg

After recognising a climate change emergency, Stevenage Borough Council has released a draft strategy in a bid to become carbon-neutral by 2030. Picture: Pexels - Credit: Archant

Proposals to tackle climate change and make Stevenage a carbon-neutral town by 2030 are out for public consultation.

Stevenage Borough Council declared a climate emergency in June and has now launched a draft strategy to tackle the problem.

The strategy outlines actions the council intends to take to achieve its carbon-neutral target.

So far, two electric vehicles are now available for council staff to use in their day-to-day work. Later this year there will be 12 public electric charging bays, with four more available via E-Car Club.

SBC is conducting a feasability study into a cycle hire scheme in the town, and 17 traders have so far signed up to offer free water refills to help cut disposable plastic bottle use.

To improve biodiversity, verges and parkland are being 'meadow managed' to support an array of wildlife and increase the carbon capture rate of the land.

Ward councillors are also funding a new orchard in Symonds Green, which will see 12 mixed fruit trees planted along with wildflower seeds.

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Recognising greater action is necessary, the council is calling on people to take part in a consultation on how to make Stevenage greener and more sustainable.

Councillor John Gardner, executive member for environment, said: "We are committed to working with a wide range of partners across the town to develop our climate change strategy and action plan for the next decade. This will bring benefits such as reduced fuel poverty, improved environment and air quality, and better green spaces."

He added: "We expect all new planning applications to demonstrate how environmental impact is to be mitigated. We want new developments to maximise opportunities for implementing renewable energy technologies, reducing the need for costly retrofitting or rebuilding in the future."

SBC will also set up a people's assembly made up of residents representing a broad and diverse range of views in the town.

A charter will encourage local businesses to publicly show their commitment to tackling climate change.

The consultation is open until March 22. To view the strategy, pledges and business charter and have your say, visit stevenage.gov.uk/climate-change.