Update on Council's Carbon-Cutting Activities

Posted by: Caroline Smith on 13 December 2022 11:05


A report on South Tyneside Council's carbon-cutting activities will be presented next week.


Members of the Place Select Committee will receive an update on how the council is delivering against its ambitious climate change targets set out in the Sustainable South Tyneside strategy in support of its drive towards carbon neutrality by 2030.


The Council has set an interim reduction figure of 25% reduction from its baseline of 17,410 tonnes within three years - by March next year.


It is two thirds of the way towards that figure, with 2,816 tonnes having been cut. The impact of the Covid pandemic has distorted reduction figures over the past two years, with the temporary closures of buildings and home working reducing energy consumption and in turn, carbon emissions from these energy sources.


However, a review of the six months from April - September this year compared to the same period in 2021 shows that there has been an 8% reduction in electricity emissions and more than a 15% cut in gas emissions.


Cllr Margaret Meling, Lead Member for Economic Growth, Skills and Climate Change, said: "While the impact of Covid has skewed figures and made it difficult to evaluate true progress, we are two thirds of the way towards our three-year target and there has clearly been a significant reduction in overall emissions.

"We've made a firm commitment to be carbon neutral by 2030, and while we have already made considerable progress, there is more to be done

"We are further expanding our network of electric vehicle charge points, having secured funding for seven more charging posts across the Borough.

"We've used multiple initiatives to encourage active travel, including cycle cinemas, bike workshops and a £3m investment at Metro stations to improve walking and cycling links.f

"Our engagement programme with schools will be developed further with a series o in-person workshops this winter, as well as the council contributing to outdoor learning opportunities by providing 60 trees.

We will continue to innovate and use technology to bring forward schemes that will move us closer to our goal of a greener, cleaner South Tyneside and a low carbon future for our residents."

Through the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme the Council has implemented measures such as energy efficient ground- and air-source heat pumps, replacing gas fired boilers; LED lighting upgrades; roof mounted solar PV installations and building fabric improvements. Reductions have already been seen in this year's mid-year reporting compared to the same period for last year.

Progress continues on the three groundbreaking renewable energy schemes in each of the Borough's towns, which once operational, have the potential to deliver a 35 per cent reduction in emissions against the baseline.

The Council is also part of Net Zero North East England, a new partnership that has been formed to accelerate decarbonisation and to make sure that the journey results in economic opportunities, an improved natural environment and better standards of living for everyone in the region.

The report will be presented at the meeting of Place Select Committee, next Tuesday, 20 December.


Last modified: 13 December 2022 12:07