Tackling emissions in South Lakeland

We will support the District and our local communities to lower their carbon footprint. We can all play our part in preventing the impact of climate change.

We work with teams in Cumbria to analyse our carbon footprint, so we know where and when we are producing greenhouse gases (GHGs). Cumbria should aim to be carbon-neutral by 2037 to achieve the target of one point five degrees celsius of warming set out in the Paris Agreement on Climate Action.

What you can do to help reduce emissions

The average South Lakeland Resident consumes more than 12 tonnes of CO2e per year. Travel, household fuel and food and drink are the main emitters.

Major change is needed in all aspects of our lives to achieve net-zero emissions by 2037. Offsetting through land use change plays a major role as this will need to increase by four times year on year.

Some of these changes may rely on advances in technology over the next 17 years, but many of these changes we can start to implement much sooner.

Here are some suggestions of what changes will be needed and how they can be brought about:

  • reduction in household fuel use. Improving insulation and efficiency within homes can cut emissions and fuel bills: Cumbria Action for Sustainability (CAfS) can give advice and training with this
  • electricity decarbonisation. For example, switching to a renewable energy provider, installing a heat pump or solar panels instead of an oil system
  • reduction in carbon intensity of driving. For example switching to an electric or hybrid vehicle. Try to prioritise active travel, and only travel when necessary. Switch your next holiday to a local trip
  • reduction in residents driving. For example by using public transport, car share schemes, cycling, and walking where possible
  • cut waste. For example plan meals to eliminate food waste, use up leftovers, be creative with surplus food. Then use a compost bin/ wormery for any raw food waste left
  • make sustainable food choices. Think about the carbon footprint of the food you eat eg. Buying locally, having less imported meat. Extend this to all consumption including clothes, electronics and toiletries
  • cut in air freight. Buy locally grown/produce where possible to reduce the food miles and carbon footprint of food

Reducing emissions caused by tourism

Tourism in Cumbria emits nearly as much as residents. Changes need to be made including:

  • reduction in emissions from visitors travelling to and from the area
  • encouraging visitors to stay longer or reduce their carbon intensity of travelling to our district
  • using public transport, buses and ferries, cycling and walking

What we're doing to help reduce emissions

We are working with other local authorities, partner agencies and businesses to work towards reducing emissions in South Lakeland. This includes using our services to collaborate with partner organisations and working to influence stakeholders. We have already introduced schemes and worked with local partners to reduce emissions in our district.

Our services and collaboration with partners

Objective Action Timescale
Review transport arrangements, improving travel, parking and roads in the district to move to a greener network
  • review licensing and permits, encourage electric vehicles and discourage vehicle idling
  • install Electric Vehicle charge points and look in to discount parking rates for low emission vehicles
  • encourage Cumbria County Council to improve pedestrian and cycle routes across the district
  • support a review of public transport
  • facilitate cycle hire provision, including electric bikes
Medium term
Encourage all festivals and events to be low carbon
  • request sustainability plans for our own events and events organised by third parties including travel plans, stalls and sound/lighting systems
Medium term
Support Businesses to become low carbon organisation
  • for example helping with green audits, hosting workshops and collaborate with companies on community energy groups
Short term
Help the tourism industry transition to low carbon
  • work with the National Park Authorities to support carbon reduction, better environmental management and increasing transport choices
Medium term
Encourage cleaner and greener utilities and services
  • working with utility companies and services to help neighbourhoods to be energy efficient and reduce waste
Medium term
Help residents to have more energy-efficient homes
  • promoting schemes such as LEAP/ Cold to Cosy and offering grants. Encourage local Registered Housing Providers to implement higher energy-efficient standards.
Short to medium term
Ensure local planning processes prioritise sustainability and energy efficiency
  • consult with communities and stakeholders on policy options for how new development can reduce carbon emissions. Progress work on a local nature recovery and green infrastructure strategy. Deliver climate change training for all Council planning officers.
Long term
Influencing UK wide initiatives
  • councillors to lobby national government on low carbon initiatives and relevant policies

Our influence with stakeholders

Objective Action Timescale
Working with community groups to encourage wider participation
  • promote schemes and programmes that reduce our carbon footprint
  • facilitate a citizens’ jury
  • work with schools, local businesses, farmers and landowners
  • provide a funding pot for community projects
  • engage with parish councils and other local authorities
  • work with local organisations and charities such as Cumbria Action for Sustainability (CAfS)
Helping to keep the community up to date with changes on the green agenda and staying transparent and contactable Using our website, working with the local press and attending local events we are keen to know and share best practices across our district Ongoing

So far, we have:

  • introduced the Fill-up scheme, offering free water refills
  • provided financial support to enable the delivery of environmental projects
  • financed a business leader event around sustainability issues
  • continued to encourage ‘reduce, reuse, and recycle’ message around refuse and waste
  • continued to promote and support the handyperson scheme, LEAP (Local Energy Advice Partnership) and Cold to Cosy scheme to help residents improve energy efficiency
  • worked with Cumbria County to commission a Carbon Baseline Report for Cumbria
  • funded a zero carbon project in Ambleside