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Climate Emergency milestones

It’s now a year since Wirral Council declared a climate emergency.

The declaration began a programme of work designed to reduce the carbon impact of Wirral’s public services. Here’s a look back at some of the achievements from the past 12 months.

Cool 2

The council has endorsed the ambitious Cool 2 strategy to address the climate emergency and is developing its own action plan in support. This sets ambitious targets for Wirral as a whole to eliminate climate damaging pollution completely within the next 20 years, meaning local CO2 emissions need to reduce by three and a half times more each year than has been achieved so far.

The council is aiming to eliminate its own emissions within the next 10 years to set a leading example.

Investment in Sustainable Travel

Approximately £1.2 million is being made available by the council to invest in facilities and infrastructure to support cycling and walking. The aim is to make sustainable and active travel more accessible.

Residents are being asked for feedback to help identify roads, routes, paths and areas that could be adapted to help maintain social distancing or improved for cycling and/or walking.

eCargo bikes

Five ‘try before you buy’ electric cargo bikes are to be bought after the council made a bid for funding. Wirral was just one of 18 successful local authorities and will received almost £40,000 from the Energy Savings Trust.

The aim is to rapidly reduce the environmental impact of existing delivery vehicle fleets, including enabling a reduction in the number of journeys undertaken by motorised vehicles.

Streetlighting

Works to replace the borough’s streetlights with energy efficient LED lights has reached a milestone of approximately 10,000.

The new LED lights will reduce running costs and helping to meet carbon reduction targets by dramatically reducing energy use each year.

The replacement works have continued throughout lockdown.

Trees

Wirral now has a comprehensive new strategy for managing trees and woodland in the borough for the next 10 years and beyond.

The aim of the strategy is to actively protect and increase Wirral’s urban forest and to plant 21,000 new trees every year for the next decade.

Trees are our natural ‘armour’ against climate change. They capture carbon dioxide and store it in wood and other growth, removing it from the atmosphere. By the time the new trees are fully grown, Wirral’s tree canopy will have doubled.

 

There’s still a lot of work to be done, and there are small lifestyle changes we can all make which will help us on our path to becoming carbon neutral by 2040.

To find out some more ways you can make a difference in this climate emergency, read the latest strategy for Wirral and create your own action plan, visit the council’s website.