Mid Sussex District Council set Net Zero targets

Mid Sussex

Mid Sussex District Council has adopted Net Zero targets for both the Council and the wider District to help tackle climate change and reduce global warming.

At a meeting of Full Council on 2 November 2022, Councillors overwhelmingly agreed to reduce direct council-controlled carbon emissions to Net Zero by 2040 and support the wider District to reach the national Government target of Net Zero by 2050.

Net Zero is achieved by striking a balance between the greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere and the greenhouse gases removed from the atmosphere.

Mid Sussex District Council has already begun to reduce carbon emissions by installing PV solar panels on Council buildings that generate around 27,000 kwh of pollution-free electricity per year, a carbon reduction of 6.9 tonnes.

In September the Council started to trial a new recycling and general waste collection system that includes the separate collection of food waste to boost recycling and reduce the amount of general waste produced. Recycled food waste is turned into bio-fertiliser that helps crops to grow and renewable electricity that provides a sustainable source of power. Just one lorry load of food waste can generate enough renewable energy to power 20,000 televisions for an hour.

The Council is supporting sustainable methods of travel for employees by enabling them to access to Electric Vehicle Charging Points at the Council offices, borrow electric bikes for short journeys and upgrading the Council’s parking enforcement fleet to electric vehicles.

Over 50 new Electric Vehicle Charging Points have been installed across Mid Sussex as part of the new West Sussex ChargePoint network. These are just the start of a much bigger rollout that will see thousands more EV Chargers connected across West Sussex over the next 10 years.

West Sussex local authorities are progressing a joint programme to support businesses to lower their carbon footprint. A key part of the programme is the delivery of a ‘Low Carbon Business’ video series, telling the story of exemplary businesses from across the county who have embraced sustainability to realise tangible business benefits. Businesses from across sectors and representing each District and Borough feature in the series, hosted on the West Sussex County Council YouTube channel.

For Burgess Hill, the District Council has secured £20 million of funding for sustainable transport initiatives, that will be delivered through the Place and Connectivity Programme. In the past year, over 3,500 metres of footways, cycle paths and bridleways have been enhanced to provide safe and reliable alternatives to using the car.

The Council has also worked alongside a consortium of local authorities to secure funding from the Government to improve the energy efficiency of eligible homes through the Warmer Homes scheme.

Councillor Stephen Hillier, Cabinet Member for Economic Growth and Net Zero said:

“At Mid Sussex we are eager to support the UK government in the journey to Net Zero and the fight against climate change.

“Renowned sustainability and Net Zero consultancy firm Ricardo AEA has carried out detailed analysis of the Council and the wider Mid Sussex area to ensure our Net Zero targets are realistic and based on sound evidence.

“As a Council we are committed to reducing carbon emissions in our area and these Net Zero targets are an important part of our Sustainable Economy Strategy, which sets out how we’re working to make sure Mid Sussex remains an attractive, resilient and innovative District that balances social wellbeing, environmental protection and sustainable economic growth.”

For more information, please contact Martin Faulconbridge on 01444 477478 or Martin.Faulconbridge@midsussex.gov.uk

Author: Lisa Thompson
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