Consultation on mid-term review of Reading Climate Change Strategy

The Reading Climate Change Partnership (RCCP) is inviting public feedback on a mid-term review of its strategy.

In 2013, the RCCP launched its climate change strategy: ‘Reading Means Business on Climate Change’, setting out a vision and action plan for local action on climate change to 2020.

A 6-week public consultation has now been launched half way through the strategy timeframe to ensure the original priorities and associated action plans remain relevant. As it is a ‘mid-term’ review, rather than a new strategy, the original aims and direction will not fundamentally alter. Feedback will be used to refresh priorities where needed.

The mid-term review aims to:

  • update and simplify the strategic priorities
  • reflect changes in the national and international policy context
  • pay greater attention to how Reading can adapt to the effects of climate change
  • close actions that have been completed or cannot currently be resourced

Each chapter of the strategy has been updated to ensure proposed actions are achievable within the strategy’s timeframe. Updated draft versions of the strategy and the action plans are now available for comment at https://consult.reading.gov.uk/css/reading-climate-change-partnership-strategy-review. The consultation opens today (Monday May 15th) and the closing date for submissions is Monday June 26th.

RCCP Chair Dan Fernbank said:

“Much has changed since we launched our original strategy back in 2013, and this update looks to ensure we have a coherent plan which is ambitious, and also deliverable with the available resource.  We are now seeking feedback from the wider community to ensure we harness the collective desire for local action on the global issue of climate change.”

A recent meeting of Reading Borough Council’s Strategic Environment and Planning Committee heard there has been a 32% drop in carbon emissions produced by Reading as a whole between 2005 and 2014, and 38% less per head of population. That is ahead of target, the best in Berkshire and the 5th best performance in the South East out of 74 local authorities. Nationally Reading’s is the 27th best performance out of 408 local authorities reported, in terms of the reduction per head of population.

Cllr Tony Page, Reading Borough Council’s Lead Member for Strategic Environment, Planning and Transport, said:

“Much progress has been made over recent years, both by the Council and across the borough.

“In terms of those carbon emissions over which the Council has control, 2015/16 saw an 11% decrease, which builds on large reductions in previous years. We have also seen a 32% drop in carbon emissions in Reading as a whole, which is by far the best in Berkshire.

“While the Council is leading by example in this area, by far the largest source of C02 emissions are from industrial, commercial and retail premises. Partners, local businesses and private individuals must play their part as well, and that is what we hope to drive forward through the work of the Reading Climate Change Partnership. This mid-term review will help provide the partnership with a strong foundation for 2020, when a new climate change strategy for Reading will be launched.”

Notes to editors:

  • The Reading Climate Change Partnership, and the associated Reading Climate Action Network, are voluntary partnerships bringing together representatives from the public, private, voluntary and community sectors.
  • The original version of the strategy and action plan, can be found on the Reading Climate Action Network website at http://www.readingclimateaction.org.uk/

Oscar Mortali

For media enquiries about this release email oscar.mortali@reading.gov.uk or call 0118 937 2301