Crawley climate change actions backed
Crawley Borough Council has built on its pledge to cut its carbon emissions by 45 per cent by 2030.
The pledge – which included being carbon neutral by 2050 – was made after a climate emergency was declared in 2019.
Now it has been backed by 19 recommendations from a scrutiny panel set up to look into how the council’s workings and activities impacted its carbon footprint.
The recommendations included:
• Extending the Hazelwick Air Quality Management Zone and considering other low emission zones to improve air quality
• Considering the introduction of community car, bike sharing and car clubs within the borough
• Continuing the work to increase the number of electric vehicle charging points across the borough and considering incentives for electric vehicles
• Considering lowering the pool temperature at K2 leisure centre as this is the biggest single contributor of CO2 from within the council’s estate
• Committing to increase the number of sites for wild flower verges across the town
• Promoting energy saving initiatives and projects to residents
• Considering the use of new technology fuel – such as hydro-treated vegetable oil – which could be used immediately in diesel engines.
At a meeting of the full council last week, committee chairman Kim Jaggard said: “I appreciate there are difficult decisions to make. Not all of us will support all of the individual recommendations.
“But it’s a range of the changes – a balancing act – balancing cost, convenience, behaviour.
“We did all agree to reduce the carbon emissions generated by the council and we all need to do our bit.”
Mrs Jaggard was supported by Gurinder Jhans, cabinet member for environmental services and sustainability.
Mr Jhans said the committee’s report was the ‘first step’ in reaching the zero carbon goal.
He added: “We don’t reach net zero just by wishing it. There will be difficult decisions to take and some sacrifices that we all need to make.
“But it has to be a process by which we reach that net zero goal.”
The recommendations will now be evaluated by officers drawing up the council’s Climate Emergency Action Plan.
Karen Dunn , Local Democracy Reporting Service