CAMBRIDGE City Council, in collaboration with Cambridge Carbon Footprint, is marking Net Zero Week, a national campaign running from Saturday 2 July to Friday 8 July.
In Cambridge, the council has a vision to reduce carbon emissions to net zero carbon by 2030, and is working with Cambridge Carbon Footprint to encourage residents to take action to reduce their carbon footprint using the new Cambridge Climate Map.
The map is designed to make climate action easier, featuring a personal guide to places and resources in the city that will make it easy for residents to take climate action and live in a more sustainable way.
Residents can get their hands on a copy of the new map at a launch event, open to all, outside the Guildhall in Market Square, from 10am-4pm on Saturday 2 July.
The council’s Climate Change Strategy 2021-2026, details how it will tackle the climate crisis by reducing its direct emissions to net zero and working with partners and communities towards a vision of a net zero Cambridge by 2030.
Cllr Rosy Moore, Executive Councillor for Environment, Climate Change and Biodiversity, said: “Net Zero Week is a great opportunity for all of us to think about the urgent challenges brought about by climate change.
“We can also learn about what each of us can do to play our part in reducing carbon emissions and working towards a net zero Cambridge, to ensure this city is as beautiful in the future as it is now. The new Cambridge Climate Map is a great guide to find out how you can start.”
Residents can also measure their carbon footprint online and get tailored tips on which actions to take and which will have the biggest impact by visiting the
Cambridge Climate Change Charter website. Residents can sign the Cambridge Climate Charter to make a commitment to taking action and get access to useful resources which may also help to save money on household bills.
The council has recently completed a major investment in carbon reduction schemes at Parkside and Abbey swimming pools. A range of energy and carbon saving measures have been installed at the pools utilising central government funding including air source heat pumps, additional solar PV panels, and new building management systems to reduce the use of fossil fuels. These measures will reduce carbon emissions from the council’s swimming pools by more than 500 tonnes per year, save over 2.4 million kWh and will result in an estimated nine per cent reduction in the council’s overall carbon emissions.
The council is also increasing carbon literacy among its staff by asking every member of staff to complete environmental awareness training. The training is supplemented with additional net zero training for managers and councillors to increase understanding of people’s impact on the environment, and the actions anyone can take to reduce emissions to make the council and the city more sustainable.
Through the Action on Energy partnership with other local councils, the council’s work to retrofit homes across Cambridgeshire continues. Using the Sustainable Warmth government grant funding, the countywide partnership expects to complete energy efficiency improvements to over 200 properties in Cambridgeshire by the end of July, with 79 of those being in Cambridge. The council will then continue to retrofit more properties using the next round of funding secured. Sustainable Warmth funding is available across Cambridgeshire and residents in Cambridge can check if they are eligible to access the funding on the council’s website.
The council has also begun its Net Zero Carbon pilot housing project and is engaging interested council tenants to join a pilot project to retrofit up to 50 council homes to net zero carbon, reducing emissions and energy bills for tenants.
Any Cambridge residents who own their own home and are interested in retrofitting their own house to reduce their carbon emissions and their energy costs, will also soon be able to use council vetted and approved contractors.
The council is currently setting up a Framework Agreement of multiple suppliers who will undertake energy efficiency retrofit works across Cambridgeshire, providing homeowners with a route to find contractors to do retrofit work. Residents will be able to find out more about this later this year from Action on Energy.