The National Association of Local Councils’ (NALC) projects officer, Claire Goldfinch has written about the role communities can play in protecting the environment.
The effects of climate change were evident within every community in 2020 – most notably in the extreme weather conditions. It is down to every community to understand the tasks that they can implement to tackle climate change. And, as localised community action is part of the solution to climate change, local (parish and town) councils, being the most local of local government and nearest to their communities, are crucial to changing the hearts, minds and actions of individuals.
The National Association of Local Councils (NALC), the membership body for 10,000 local councils in England, is taking action to help local councils in their endeavour to rebuild communities after the coronavirus pandemic and create sustainable communities.
NALC is supporting its members by providing solutions to climate change through its website guidance, and by providing good practice examples. For instance, we have highlighted the excellent work local councils are doing round climate change by publishing over 100 occurrences in our Climate Change case studies document.
One featured council is Frome Parish Council, Somerset, which declared a climate emergency in 2018 and has committed to becoming carbon neutral by 2030. It introduced a solar funding project which helps residents install solar panels at a discounted rate. So far, 15 homes have used the Solar Streets programme, and more are in progress. It is also introducing sustainability measures such as pledging to stop using single-use plastics in the town hall.
The council has made a clear impact within the community and has made it easy for others to do the same.
Other featured councils are Penrith and Fownhope.
Read the NALC article and see the case studies
NB Dorset CAN members Belinda Bawden and Josey Parish are part of NALC's Climate Action Task & Finish group. They are currently analysing the results of a climate change survey of town and parish councils to identify barriers to action and support needed to encourage councils to plan effectively for Net Zero futures.