Climate progress report by Council, Dec 2011

The report is divided into five sections
1) Introduction and Background
2) Greater Manchester Highlights
3) Manchester Highlights
4) Manchester City Council Highlights
5) Next Steps.

It doesn’t talk about what hasn’t gone well, what effects the austerity cuts have had, and what difficulties lie ahead. Still, it’s an interesting and informative piece of work.

 

1.0 Introduction and Background
1.1 The Climate Change Act commits the UK to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions by 80% by 2050, relative to 1990 levels. This paper looks at actions to contribute to this target within:
 Greater Manchester (GM)
 Manchester
 MCC

1.2 This report provides highlights of carbon reduction projects both in development and being delivered. In parallel there is also work underway to define what these projects and others will contribute to Manchester’s own commitment to reduce its carbon emissions by 41% by 2020, from 2005 levels. The focus in this report is from a climate change and carbon reduction perspective, but there are also huge economic, social and fuel poverty benefits to be gained from many of these projects.

1.3 Manchester’s climate change policy context is summarised as below:
Greater Manchester Climate Change Strategy and Low Carbon Economic Area
The Greater Manchester Climate Change Strategy sets out how the shift to a low carbon economy for GM will help to establish long-term sustainable economic growth through a major expansion of the city-region’s low carbon goods and services sector; at the same time as achieving a 48% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2020, from 1990 levels (40% from 2005). The Strategy was approved at AGMA Executive in July 2011.
Greater Manchester was designated a Low Carbon Economic Area (LCEA) for the Built Environment in 2009. Its delivery plan will form part of the Climate Change Strategy Implementation Plan for 2012-15, covering the ‘Buildings’ and some of the ‘Energy’ actions over this period. The Implementation Plan will also cover the Strategy’s three other themes: Transport; Green and Blue Infrastructure, and; Sustainable Consumption & Production.

Manchester – A Certain Future (MACF)
Manchester – A Certain Future (MACF) is the city’s stakeholder climate change action plan, setting out the actions which the city as a whole needs to deliver in order to achieve its headline objectives: 41% carbon reduction by 2020, relative to 2005 recorded levels, and; ‘low carbon thinking’ embedded in the operations and lifestyles of the city’s stakeholders. The plan was formally
endorsed by the City Council’s Executive in November 2009. The plan’s delivery is overseen by an independent Steering Group consisting of a mixture of public, private and third-sector representatives.

MCC Manchester – A Certain Future Delivery Plan 2010- 20
This 10-year delivery plan sets out what the Council will do over the period 2010-20 to contribute to the delivery of MACF. The Delivery Plan commits the Council to reducing its operational emissions by 41% by 2020 from 2009/10 levels, and aims to provide leadership and example in the process of Manchester’s transformation into an internationally recognised low carbon city, embedding low carbon thinking and behaviour into its culture, processes and the operation of all its services. The Plan was approved by the Council’s Executive in October 2010.

2.0 Greater Manchester Highlights
2.1 As part of the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA), Manchester City Council works closely with the nine other authorities to develop coordinated programmes of work which will contribute to both GM and Manchester climate change objectives. Current highlights of this GM works are as follows:

Low-Carbon Housing Retrofit Programme
2.2 The GM housing retrofit programme aims to improve the energy efficiency of the housing stock and educate residents on how they can reduce their energy consumption to save carbon and reduce their fuel bills. A Greater Manchester Low Carbon Housing Retrofit Strategy is currently being produced that encompasses this work and sets out GM’s ambition to deliver 48% reduction in carbon emissions from the housing sector by 2020: 7 years ahead of the national target. This strategy is currently out to consultation and the final version will be launched in February 2012.

Get Me Toasty Campaign
2.3 The GM-wide Toasty campaign has been running since January 2011 and since September 2011 has been installing loft and cavity insulation measures for free to Manchester households to reduce their energy bills and carbon emissions. To date 11,000 requests for surveys have been received from across GM. In Manchester 1,267 installations have been carried out this financial year either under the former Warm Homes scheme or the new Toasty scheme.

Behaviour Change
2.4 A study into integrating behavioural change into low carbon housing retrofit ‘The Missing Quarter’ has led to energy awareness training being delivered to Housing Providers so they can provide assistance to their tenants; involving Manchester-based third sector organisation Action for Sustainable Living. In Manchester training has been provided to staff from Willow Park, Eastlands, Great Places and Northwards amongst others. Funding generated from this
training will be utilised to widen the audience to community and other interest groups and will make strong links with the Manchester Carbon Literacy Project.

Green Deal Business Case
2.5 The Green Deal is a government initiative to be launched next year to assist householders and businesses to install energy efficiencymeasures in their homes through reassurances that the cost of the measures will be covered by savings on their energy bills. An options appraisal is being carried out looking at the potential roles of the public sector/AGMA in delivering a GM Green Deal.

Solar Photovoltaic (PV) Project
2.6 A project to install solar PV panels (solar panels that generate electricity) on up to 6,000 GM Social Housing roofs by the end of March 2012 has been significantly impacted by Government plans to reduce Feed-In Tariff (FIT) for Solar PV. Despite the timescales for the announced change, in Manchester Northwards Housing have managed to install solar panels on nearly 100 homes and are on track to deliver up to 400 before the reduction in FIT in mid- December. GM has submitted a response to the government (DECC and CLG) consultation on the proposed FIT changes as it is a lost opportunity to
provide more fuel poor tenants with free, renewable energy.

Energy Infrastructure
2.7 The energy infrastructure strand of the LCEA is currently being developed, with programmes being structured into heat networks, hydro and large-scale wind turbines. The heat network programme is currently made up of eleven projects and is being led by Manchester City Council. It has been designed to enable Greater Manchester projects to be able to move from concept to delivery more quickly and at lower cost than a project-by-project approach.

2.8 The heat network programme will first deliver Oldham’s St Mary’s project as phase 1, followed by Manchester’s proposed Town Hall heat network scheme in Phase 2. Work is currently underway to secure resources for the development of both projects.

2.9 Manchester City Council have led a number of consultation sessions with partners in the city to support and engage with them to develop projects. Other heat network schemes in Manchester that are currently in development include the Co-operative’s new head quarters, at the University of Manchester, and at Manchester Metropolitan University, as part of their Birley Fields development.

Carbon Metrics
2.10 A requirement of the GM Climate Change Strategy is convergence across GM of the measurement and reporting of CO2 emissions, by local authorities and other organisations, to facilitate tracking of GM’s CO2 ‘account’ with consistency, reliability and regularity. Under the Council’s management, a range of tools has been developed as part of the national Local Carbon Frameworks pilot.

3.0 Manchester Highlights
3.1 On a citywide scale the Council and partners are developing and delivering projects across a range of themes that will deliver both carbon savings and encourage low carbon behavioural change in Manchester. Highlights are summarised below:

Sustainable Transport
3.2 A range of interventions are currently being developed or implemented across the city. Infrastructure improvements include the introduction of a network of electric vehicle charging points and supporting infrastructure and information.
A major ongoing extension of the Metrolink is also underway and has recently delivered new trams, new lines to Chorlton and Media City, and a new depot to serve the future network. Work is currently underway to further expand the system within Manchester to Didsbury, Wythenshawe and East Manchester, and will also include the ambitious second city crossing. These extensions and works planned for Oldham, Rochdale and Tameside will help to improve
transport links within the city and beyond to neighbouring districts.

3.3 Cycling is being increased through adult and child cycle training, and three city-centre cycle centres are being implemented following a successful bid to government led by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM). A bid is being developed (led by TfGM) to the government’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund. If successful this will bring better personalised journey planning, transport services for jobseekers, demand-responsive transport (e.g. ring and ride), and cycle promotion.

Schools
3.4 The Carbon Trust’s Collaborative Low Carbon Schools service is being piloted in nine schools by the Council, investigating ways schools can reduce their energy consumption, which will also save them money. The results from this pilot and previous school programmes will guide future delivery plans which will look to reduce the whole school’s estate energy consumption.

3.5 The Eco-Schools programme continues to engage schools in environmental projects, with continual progress through the levels up to the prestigious Green Flag award. (Note that the school’s Green Flag award scheme is different to the Green Flag scheme for parks).

80 delegates from 28 schools attended this years annual
Eco-Schools Conference, which was focused on climate change and carbon reduction.

Businesses
3.6 The Environmental Business Pledge has been operating within the City of Manchester’s boundaries for 5 years, engaging with businesses and organisations of all sizes. The scheme provides the ability to benchmark and demonstrate environmental achievements, while providing both environmental and economic outputs.

The achievements of the scheme so far are as follows:
 6,905 tonnes CO2 savings for business (N.B the measurement of
carbon savings started in January 2009)
 8,834 tonnes of materials saved/ diverted from landfill
 51,221m3 water saved
 £1,665,636 cost savings for businesses
 100 new jobs created
 390 jobs safeguarded

3.7 The future for the scheme includes the development of sustainable consumption and production targets and national formal accreditation. The Council is also operating in partnership with other local authorities in GM in order to provide greater combined environmental support to businesses.

Carbon Literacy
3.8 The Manchester Carbon Literacy Project follows a commitment made in Manchester – A Certain Future to provide access to a days-worth of ‘carbon literacy’ training to everyone who lives, works or studies in the city. The project is being progressed by Cooler Projects and is being funded through the Council’s ‘Low Carbon Reserve’.

Third sector community work
3.9 Working with third sector organisations has enabled the City Council to deliver broader social and economic objectives as well as levering in match-funding which would otherwise have been inaccessible to the City Council directly.
There are 6 third sector partners and projects include:
 Low Carbon Community Grants – including training groups on managing projects and developing funding bids
 Climate Change Champions Programme in Schools
 Development of an Eco Hub and delivery of Future Manchester, a
series of climate change events from 25th November to 2nd December 2011
 Green Infrastructure Plan for the City Centre
 Delivering tree planting and multi-purpose landscapes with local
communities
 Developing a Carbon Literacy programme across the City
 Providing environmental business support
 Training tenant engagement officers to promote low carbon practices with their residents

Green Infrastructure and Biodiversity
3.10 Green infrastructure (GI) is a collective term used to describe parks, river valleys, green roofs, woodlands, gardens and other elements of the natural environment. GI is critical to the city’s future success given its ability to deliver a number of benefits, including adaptation to future climate change, improvements to air quality, space for leisure and recreation, and has been proven to increase patients’ rates of recovery from illness. A Manchester Green Infrastructure Plan being put in place in 2012 will draw together a
number of existing initiatives such as:
o A £500,000 project in at Nutsford Vale in Gorton South delivered in
partnership between the City Council and Red Rose Forest has
transformed a previously underused former landfill site.
o In the City Centre a project between the City Council, CityCo and British Waterways has delivered habitat improvements along the Rochdale Canal,
o At St John’s Gardens in the city centre a gold award-winning garden from this year’s Tatton Flower Show has been transplanted to provide an urban orchard and new areas for the city centre’s wildlife.

4.0 MCC Highlights
4.1 The Council’s ten year Delivery Plan commits the authority to reduce its carbon emissions by 41% by 2020 and in doing so demonstrate leadership which can be replicated by other organisations within the city and beyond.
Annual Carbon Reduction Plans with short-term targets ensure the authority is making continual progress against this long-term target.

4.2 A 6% reduction in carbon emissions was achieved in 2010/11, against the 10% target which was set in the Annual Carbon Reduction Plan for this period.
Members will recall a report to this Committee in July 2011 setting out further detail for 2010/11 and the Annual Carbon Reduction Plan for 2011/12.
Low Carbon Service Plans and Carbon Budgets

4.3 In 2010 the Environment Strategy service began the process of engaging with all Departments to develop individual low carbon service plans, so that long and short-term carbon reduction objectives can be integrated into service delivery through business planning.

4.4 The Executive Committee will receive annual carbon reduction reporting as part of each year’s annual Carbon Reduction Plan. In addition to this, quarterly RAG rated performance reports for Departmental and Senior Management Teams will now be an integrated part of a regular performance framework; this was launched in November 2011.

MCC Buildings & Energy Programme
4.5 An MCC Buildings & Energy Strategy 2011-2020 has been produced detailing how the Council will achieve a 41% carbon reduction by 2020 from within the estate. The Strategy consists of five strands:
 Asset rationalisation
 Cultural change
 Minor energy efficiency improvements
 Major building retrofit
 New buildings

4.6 As part of the major retrofit programme energy audits are currently being undertaken to investigate how best to retrofit the Council’s buildings. These energy audits will underpin major retrofit pilots on Council buildings in 2012/13-2013/14, and subsequently the roll-out of two 3-year retrofit programmes between 2014/15-2016/17 and 2017/18-2019/20.

4.7 Minor energy efficiency improvements are still progressing this year, including the installation of smart meters, voltage optimizers and low carbon lighting. As well as saving energy and money, this has led to Manchester City Council being placed in the top 5% of organisations the country who have taken early action to monitor and reduce their carbon emissions.
Sustainable Consumption & Production

4.8 A Sustainable Consumption Action Plan has been developed that will coordinate and report upon the key areas of Sustainable Consumption & Production for the Council and feed into the annual Carbon Reduction Plan.
Progress highlights include finalisation of the city’s Sustainable Food Delivery Plan, dissemination and discussion of a carbon audit and school menus development by Manchester Fayre. The North West dCarbon project also started in November 2011, looking to improve the sustainability of the Council’s supply chain in conjunction with the Manchester Environmental Business Pledge.

Sustainable Transport
4.9 The Council is a leader in promoting sustainable travel by its staff and has already achieved substantial modal shift from cars to walking, cycling and public transport. To continue this there are a range of projects underway, and we are currently surveying staff and councillors to learn more about their travel patterns and to assist in driving further improvements.

4.10 Services and facilities for staff include reduced-cost public transport season tickets and bike purchases, car club, pool bikes, and the Council is currently reducing the need to travel by introducing teleconferencing facilities and consolidating the Council’s estate onto fewer sites. This is being supported through changes to the business travel policies and the current changes to the taxi contract are being utilised to reduce taxi use and reduce carbon emissions from unavoidable taxi journeys.

5.0 Next Steps
5.1 Through effective governance and the establishment of several key partnerships, climate change programmes and projects across all three levels (GM, Manchester, MCC) have now been put in place. The City Council’s Environmental Strategy Service is at the heart of the work to coordinate and deliver this activity, working with Manchester and Greater Manchester partners to maximise the carbon and cost savings which can be achieved through a coordinated approach.

5.2 Alongside achieving significant carbon savings, the delivery of coordinated GM, Manchester and MCC low carbon programmes will also create the demand for new low carbon jobs and skills for Manchester residents and organisations; the Low Carbon Economic Area Delivery Plan, for example, is estimated to create 34,800 new jobs in the GM low carbon goods and services sector.
5.3 GM and the City Council are continuing to work closely with government on a number of projects. For example with DECC as part of the local authority Green Deal development group, and also as a pilot authority on the Local Carbon Frameworks project.

5.4 Key next steps at each level are as follows:

Greater Manchester
5.5 An Implementation Plan for the Greater Manchester Climate Change Strategy
for the period 2012/13 – 2014/15 is being produced. The Plan will be grouped by theme (buildings, energy, transport, green and blue spaces, and sustainable consumption) as well as geographically by district. The Implementation Plan is scheduled for approval to the AGMA Executive Board in March 2012.

Manchester
5.6 Manchester’s next citywide climate change conference will be held in March 2012; during Climate Week 2012. The conference is being developed by the Manchester – A Certain Future Steering Group, with support from the community and environmental regeneration charity Groundwork. The conference will include a strong focus on low carbon cultural change and there will be opportunities for young people to be involved on the day.

MCC
5.7 As committed to in the Annual Carbon Reduction Plan 2011/12 the Strategic Management Team and individual Directorates now receive quarterly carbon budget reports. Monitoring of progress against these carbon budgets is now the ongoing responsibility of Directorates, with additional scrutiny and performance monitoring undertaken through Environmental Strategy Programme Board. Work is underway to ensure that progress is widely communicated both throughout the Council and to all stakeholders.

5.8 This work forms part of the activity outlined in Section 2.10 to put in place a consistent carbon metrics system across Greater Manchester. Further work on this is planned in early-2012 as part of the development of the Implementation
Plan 2012-15 for the GM Climate Change Strategy.

5.9 The Council’s Annual Carbon Reduction Plan 2012/13 will be presented to the Executive Committee for approval in summer 2012, and will include a progress report against the 2011/12 plan.

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