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Climate change

Climate change zero emissions van

Why tackling climate change is vital

Burning coal, gas and oil (together known as fossil fuels) is increasing the concentration of carbon dioxide in the earth’s atmosphere, causing a global temperature rise and significant disruption to our climate.

The most immediate consequences of this are extreme weather events – including record-breaking heatwaves and flooding.

Climate change has the potential to destabilise the earth’s natural systems that we rely on to live and poses a serious threat to all societies around the world.

We may be able to minimise its impact if we make substantial changes to our energy use and lifestyles during this decade.

You can find out more about Climate Change in the BBC’s Really Simple Guide.

The council’s strategy

While governments and industries can make the largest contributions, councils also have a role to play. As a large employer and provider of local services, we can make changes to how we work that will reduce the production of carbon dioxide.

We’re also committed to helping our residents understand the impact of their choices and help them to switch to less polluting alternatives – for instance, by supporting the switchover to electric vehicles.

As an organisation and a borough we have committed to work towards becoming carbon neutral by 2030.

We’ve established the following framework around which the council, our partners and residents can take action to reduce the climate impact of everything that happens in our borough.

See the Council’s Interim Climate Emergency Strategy in full.

1. Clean energy used efficiently 

Transitioning to 100% low carbon and renewable energy solutions, while also maximising energy efficiency and conservation.

2. Zero-emission transport

Decarbonising public and private transport, helping to increase the number of zero emissions journeys, and significantly improving air quality.

3. A waste-free borough

Ensuring all waste (including food waste) is minimised, recycled and re-used as part of a circular economy approach.

4. Healthy places for us and the rest of nature

Making sure land use in the borough balances the needs of people and the rest of nature.

5. Good governance for long term sustainability

Embedding our climate commitments at the heart of local decision making, including in our financial planning.

6. Eco-literate and engaged communities

Helping everyone in Harrow to make informed lifestyle and consumer choices that address the climate and ecological challenges.

7. A socially just transition

Ensuring that the most vulnerable in our society are supported and protected during this period of major social and economic transformation.