Climate change consultation results

What did we do, what did we ask

We asked your views about climate change alongside understanding how to best engage and communicate with you on environmental and sustainability issues. We engaged with a variety of people, through holding six in-person consultation events and running an online survey for 3 months receiving feedback from over 200 people.

Key Results

It was clear that respondents were on the whole fairly or extremely concerned about climate change. Many held very passionate views about the scale and scope of the challenges they felt we collectively face. The top concerns included

  • The impacts of climate change on the natural environment,
  • That there is no time to wait to take action, and concerns about
  • The impacts on future generations and their way of life, including that of respondents children and grandchildren.

Four out of five people felt that climate change was important to them and that they will have to change the way they live their lives to tackle it. Three quarters of respondents said that they felt a personal responsibility to reduce the impacts of climate change, even if it meant making personal sacrifices. However, two thirds of respondents said they were worried about the financial cost to make the changes they would like, to improve their carbon footprint.

Only a small percentage of respondents were not at all concerned about climate change (5%). They tended to say that climate change was natural or question how much it was being driven by human activity.  However, it was noted that some of these respondents expressed concerns regarding care for nature and the environment, as well as concerns about over consumption and waste. They did feel that only one narrow viewpoint has been put across and that their views were not being heard.

Key takeaways

Many of the main takeaways in terms of what people want the Council to do were around how it operates as an organisation and its local leadership role. They wanted to see climate change embed within the Council and the decisions it makes, they want to see the Council lead by example, and provide honest and impartial information.

Measures to reduce waste and increase recycling and enhance and protect the natural environment received the strongest level of support overall. However there was a good level of support for a wide range of actions.

The five key actions and issues that people wanted to see addressed locally have been summarised into the categories shown below;

  • Get planning right – put the environment first in all planning decisions; solar panels on roofs, no more fossil fuel heating systems, make space for nature, build for people not cars.
  • Support for homes – provide households with support and information, on schemes and funding for insulation, EV cars and chargepoints, solar panels and heat pumps; better guidance and rules for listed building retrofitting.
  • Cut the rubbish – ditch plastic, explain what can be recycled, recycle more types of things, including food waste, and make getting rid of waste easier.
  • Make choosing how you move a reality – reduce car dependency, better public transport options, safe cycleways and footpaths and more EV chargepoints, realise opportunities of MMDR
  • Enhance and protect the natural environment – environmentally friendly management of green and open spaces, create more and better places for nature, improve the waterways, no solar farms on agricultural land.

Next Steps

The consultation has produced a large amount of information which will be useful for a variety of purposes. We aim to use the information about specific topics and issues to help shape the Council’s proposed Climate Change Strategy as well as individual projects and initiatives the Council and others may wish to support.

We hope to deliver a more effective way of engaging with the community sharing information and working collaboratively. Especially as, many respondents said that they were willing to share their skills and experiences with others in the future.

Feedback showed strong support for a local climate network as well as identifying a gap in support for schools, both of which we need explore as part of the next steps.

The full consultations can be found in the report below. 

Last updated 6 November 2023
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