In 2020 Winslow Town Council passed a resolution to commit to seeking ways to facilitate and encourage our community in reducing direct and indirect CO2 emissions and to become resilient to changes caused by the changing climate.
The Council wants to share information about the steps it has taken or is progressing towards its climate change goals. The Council hopes that the information provided will be useful to residents, businesses and organisations in our town.
Winslow Town Council's Climate Change Resolution
To facilitate the reduction of carbon emissions, the Council has adopted the following policy which will guide all of its decisions.
"The Town Council, in recognition of the 'climate emergency' declared by its upper tier councils, commits to the following actions:
- · to keep under review the management of its assets and operations so that, guided by mainstream scientific advice, it can identify practical steps towards sustainability, including the minimisation of its carbon footprint, and take those steps where practicable.
- · to follow expert advice to maximise the biodiversity within Tomkins Park & Arboretum whilst preserving its recreational use; and maximise the biodiversity on other recreational land under the Council's control,
- · to engage with the residents of the Town, local organisations and the wider community to support relevant local initiatives that promote sustainable living and business practices and to improve the environment both within the Town and in the surrounding area."
Looking forward, and with the projected increase in housing development around Winslow, the Council also has climate related issues firmly on the agenda. The Council is in the process of revising the Winslow Neighbourhood Plan and policies under consideration may include :
- For new developments, encouraging the installation of solar panels and charging points for electric vehicles for all dwellings where practicable. The installation of clean energy fuelled central heating systems for housing on development sites which will not be built out until after 2025 (ie: such sites would not be connected to the gas grid).
- For new developments of employment units, the community centre, the Winslow Centre redevelopment etc – use of and, where possible, generation of renewable energy (eg: solar panels and ground source heating).
- A policy of support for the development of solar energy sites such as that proposed for Tuckey Farm and other similar and suitable such schemes.
- Encouragement of the energy efficient construction of new homes and, in particular, the large public sector projects in the Neighbourhood Plan.
In order to reduce the Council's use of fossil fuels such as petrol and diesel, it will replace power tools with cordless electric versions where this is possible.
Long before the adoption of this policy the Council set about, and has already completed, the conversion of all street lighting under its control to LED, thus significantly reducing energy consumption and cost to the community. Street lighting is the biggest single energy-related issue under the control of the Town Council. Some highways lighting in the town is under the control of Buckinghamshire Council and some of this is yet to be converted to LED.
The Council has recently created several new plots at the town's allotments site and, with the purchase of Tomkins Park, added five acres and an arboretum of county status to the towns enviable amount of green space. Ongoing tree planting is taking place and consideration may be given to a Neighbourhood Plan policy of seeking a minimum of perhaps 20% tree canopy cover in all new developments .