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Find out how Torfaen council aims to become carbon neutral by 2030

TORFAEN council has set out how it aims to become carbon neutral by 2030 in its first major consultation into cutting emissions.

The county borough council is asking for residents to give their views on its climate and nature emergency draft action plan.

The council aims to become carbon neutral by 2030, and to lead and support communities in the borough to be carbon neutral by 2050.

Eight areas where carbon emissions can be offset or reduced are identified in the draft plan which is out for consultation.

These are energy and water efficiency; renewable energy; mobility and transport; procurement; waste; biodiversity and ecosystems; resilience and cross cutting.

Carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions in Torfaen reduced by 37 per cent between 2005 and 2018, from 667.1 kilotonnes to 420.1 kilotonnes per year, the plan shows.

But further action is still required to address the challenge, it adds.

“Nature is under threat and our climate is changing, so we need to change too,” the draft plan says.

“These are defining challenges for the council, and we know that taking early action is the best approach as it is always more difficult to react to a situation and often more costly.

“The action we take now to tackle climate change and the nature emergency will shape the legacy that we leave for future generations living in Torfaen.”

Energy efficiency measures introduced by the council between 2011 and 2019 saved 3,868 tonnes of CO2, the draft plan says.

Switching streetlights to lower energy lights since 2008 resulted in a reduction of 1,512 tonnes of CO2, while energy saving projects in schools have also cut emissions.

On renewable energy, the council has started work to develop the council’s first solar farm at the former Ty Coch rubbish tip in Cwmbran.

The plan says the council will also investigate new potential locations for renewable energy projects.

The council will also offer a cycle to work scheme for all staff, review travel expenses policies to encourage sustainable travel and improve access to bicycles at work.

All of the electricity the council buys comes from renewable sources, and the authority is developing a new approach to consider the carbon impact of goods and services it purchases.

Plans to establish two new community orchards and develop new tree planting schemes are also set out.

The strategy also includes a proposal to set up a cabinet sub-group to support the delivery of the climate and nature emergency plan.

Give your views

The consultation is open until November 21. Visit the council’s website to take part.

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Find out how Torfaen council aims to become carbon neutral by 2030

The Civic Centre in Pontypool
Torfaen Council's Civic Centre