Net Zero Carbon by 2030

300 days ago

Try eco driving to cut Carmarthenshire’s carbon footprint

People in Carmarthenshire are being encouraged to drive more efficiently and cut their carbon emissions in a bid to tackle climate change.

Carmarthenshire County Council’s road safety team say eco driving not only improves road safety, but also reduces fuel use and emissions.

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New waste strategy agreed to achieve recycling targets

Carmarthenshire County Council is progressing its plans to achieve a 70 per cent recycling rate by 2025 and zero waste by 2050. The council’s Cabinet has recently agreed a future waste strategy that will support residents to recycle even more without having to leave their homes.

A series of changes will be made to household bin collections over the next three years to increase the county’s recycling rate and reduce its carbon footprint. As well as making it easier for people to recycle, it will also be a more effective service and aligns with the council’s priorities towards tackling climate change - an issue it is highlighting through Prosiect Zero Sir Gâr - a campaign that puts focus on its work towards becoming a net carbon zero authority.

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Reducing carbon emissions from our fleet

We continue to explore more environmentally friendly options for our fleet vehicles. Our current fleet of refuse and gritter lorries are amongst the most advanced commercial fleets in Wales for diesel powered vehicles, incorporating reduced emissions technology.

We’ve also made changes to our routes to reduce mileage.

These, and other measures, have helped us reduce carbon emissions from our fleet by 19% since 2012/13 (from 4,752 tCO2e to 3,856 tCO2e).

Carmarthenshire schoolchildren unlock their super powers to tackle climate change

As our future generations, the children of Carmarthenshire are playing a vital role in supporting the fight against climate change.

Carmarthenshire County Council has engaged thousands of children in its Prosiect Zero Sir Gâr initiative - a targeted effort to bring people together to support the authority’s journey towards becoming net carbon zero by 2030.

Primary school children across the county have been challenged to become ‘Prosiect Zero Super Heroes’, sharing their super powers and ideas to help Carmarthenshire tackle climate change. Their inspiration is being shared online using #ProsiectZeroSirGar.

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Empty building brought back in to use as eco-friendly supported accommodation

An empty building in Ammanford purchased by Carmarthenshire County Council has been brought back to life to support people to live independently with a range of eco-friendly features to help them cut their carbon footprint.

The former Hafan Croeso residential home has been converted into two self-contained flats, and shared accommodation for five people which will help promote independence and improve health and well-being after the council secured funding through the Welsh Government’s Integrated Care Fund.

It has been designed with a range of measures that will reduce both energy use and carbon emissions supporting the council’s commitment to tackling climate change and becoming a net zero carbon local authority by 2030.

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Reducing carbon emissions from business mileage

In 2010 we became the first local authority in Wales to buy and use electric vehicles for our staff to use. We have also bought bikes that our staff can use for short journeys.

These measures have helped us reduce carbon emissions from our business mileage by over 36% since 2012/13 (from 1,756 tCO2e to 1,118 tCO2e).

And with better use of technology allowing more staff to work from home and meet online, we’re confident we’re making more great improvements in this area.

Recycling

Find out what you can recycle on our A-Z of recycling list. Please ensure your plastic waste, cans etc are washed out and placed in the correct recycling bins.

Low energy LED lights

In the last few years we have converted over 80% of Carmarthenshire’s 20,000 street lights to use low energy LED lights using interest-free funding secured under Welsh Government’s Wales Funding Programme.

The remaining street lights are low energy dimming lanterns which will also be changed to LED at the end of their life.

This work has helped us reduce carbon emissions from street lighting by 65% since 2011/12 (from 3,681 tCO2e to 1,291 tCO2e).

Renewable energy

As a council, we spend more than £4million every year on energy to run buildings such as schools, leisure centres, theatres and offices - but the energy we buy is from 100% renewable sources, with just under half of it sourced from within Wales.

We’re also working hard to reduce carbon emissions from our non-domestic buildings - since 2005/06 we have reduced our emissions by almost 40% (from 23,733 tCO2e to 14,822 tCO2e) but recognise there is much more to do.

Your carbon footprint

Did you know? You can find out what your carbon footprint looks like by using the WWF Carbon Footprint calculator

The first Passivhaus school in Wales

Just over six years ago, we built the first Passivhaus school in Wales with a primary school in Burry Port and have since delivered more new Passivhaus schools as part of our Modernising Education Programme.

These buildings use only 15% of the annual gas consumption of a traditionally constructed school.

The Passivhaus standard involves designing and constructing buildings with very high levels of insulation, high-performance windows, mechanical ventilation for heat recovery, and  airtight building fabric.

Passivhaus buildings typically use achieve a 75% less heating energy compared to standard new buildings in the UK.

Idea: Reduce food waste

Food production and waste is one of the highest emitters of carbon. Get creative with your leftovers and find some great recipes on the Love Food Hate Waste website.

Try and purchase food and products as locally as possible. Find out more about some of our great local businesses on our 100% Sir Gâr webpage.

Energy efficiency projects

We have recently invested over £2million in some 200 energy efficiency projects across council buildings, funded under an interest-free Salix invest-to-save programme.

This investment is projected to save over £7million and 41,000 tonnes of carbon emissions over the lifetime of the installed technologies. Coupled with our on-going property rationalisation, agile working and maintenance programmes, we are producing financial and carbon savings in times of increasing utility prices.

 

Net zero carbon

What do we mean when we say we want to become a net zero carbon authority by 2030?

As a council, we are committed to significantly reducing our carbon footprint, but we recognise that however energy or carbon efficient our services become, we will inevitably still have a residual carbon footprint.

We plan to compensate for this by generating renewable energy and/or via carbon offsetting, for example by planting trees - by doing so we aim to become net zero carbon.

 

Carmarthenshire first to publish climate action plan

In 2020, Carmarthenshire County Council became the first local authority in Wales to publish a climate change action plan detailing how it will work towards becoming net zero carbon in the next 10 years.