Sustainability is about protecting our environment from harm as a result of human activities and taking positive action to improve it.
Climate change is a big global challenge. The greenhouse gases we produce through everyday activity, such as heating our homes and driving our cars are causing climate change. In addition, the wastes we are producing are having a detrimental effect on the environment.
Reducing emissions and improving energy efficiency
To help you to improve the energy efficiency of your home, the Council is working in partnership with Act on Energy which is a local organisation providing free, impartial advice to residents on all aspects of home energy efficiency, including grants for insulation, boilers and switching energy suppliers. More information on grants and loans can be found on our energy efficiency at home page.
If you are a Council Tenant, wanting information on your heating or insulation, please contact the housing team.
Cars and transport
Cycling and walking are alternative options to using the car and a great way to stay fit and healthy. If you are just getting started with cycling, there is some great information on the Warwickshire County Council's Start Out Cycling website
You may want to consider car-sharing and there is a local car-share scheme run through Liftshare.com to find local car sharers. If you work within a large organisation, you may want to set-up a specific scheme of your own to car share to work with your colleagues.
If you are considering purchasing an electric vehicle, there are electric charge points available in the District and further plans to install more. Grants are also available to install electric charging infrastructure at home and at work, from the Office of Low Emission Vehicles for home and workplace charging.
Reducing waste and recycling
Information about the recycling we collect, recycling ventures, garden and food waste and all you need to know about recycling, can be viewed on our rubbish, waste and recycling page.
Warwick District is now part of the national Refill scheme which is supported by local cafes and restaurants and offers free refills of tap water.
Warwick District Council is taking positive action to reduce carbon emissions and improve energy efficiency:
- District Heating Tender Scheme. We are currently undertaking a feasibility study of decentralised heating opportunities in Leamington Spa in conjunction with Encraft.
- Home Energy Efficiency. We actively promote the local charity Act on Energy to help free home energy efficiency advice and support to all residents in the District by holding energy drop-in days and linking to local community groups and activities. We also help administer home energy efficiency grant funding applications.
- Electrification of vehicles. The Council in partnership with Warwickshire County Council, Volvo Group UK and Stagecoach Midlands has applied for a grant under the Office for Low Emission Vehicles, Ultra-Low Emission Bus Scheme. The grant is to bring a fully electric bus route to Leamington Spa, which includes electric buses and opportunity charging infrastructure. We are also supporting a joint bid with Warwickshire County Council to install an additional 16 electric charging points in our car parks across the District. In addition, an electric taxi project is also being investigated which could help encourage the drivers of local taxis to go electric.
- Air Quality Monitoring. We monitor air pollution in the district, check on emissions from industrial processes and aim to deliver air quality improvements as part of our air quality strategy.
- Plastics Reduction. We have a Plastics Policy in place with the aim of reducing if not eliminating plastics from our operations and to support plastic free communities. A partnership has formed with the Leamington & Warwick Plastic Free Group to help deliver the commitments.
- Bike Share Scheme. There is real opportunity for a Bike Share Scheme for Leamington and Warwick. Market testing has been undertaken with local network providers. Capital funding is going to be needed to make this happen, which is being explored.
We are working to reduce our own impact too:
- Energy, water use including our carbon emissions. We monitor our electricity and water use and are exploring opportunities for installing renewable energy technologies on our buildings.
- Electric Vehicles. Five electric and hybrid pool vehicles are in operation with further electric vehicles being explored to support our service delivery.
- Monitoring and reducing our paper use and increasing the amount of office waste that is recycled. We have calculated our annual paper use, introduced central printer/copier systems and are striving to reduce this further. We recycle all the same items from our offices as the local household waste collection scheme.
- Green procurement requirements. We have a number of green procurement commitments in place and are keen to do more in terms reviewing the effectiveness of this and placing more requirements on large contracts.
Strategic Approach to Sustainability and Climate Change 2016-2020
We have adopted a Strategic Approach to Sustainability and Climate Change which sets out how we will respond to the challenges and opportunities presented by the transition to a low-carbon, sustainable district. The strategy outlines the overarching aims, key objectives and includes an action plan setting out how we will achieve them. The strategy is reviewed and updated on a regular basis.