A plan that will see a ‘decade of action’ to address climate change issues has been agreed by political leaders at Oxfordshire County Council.
The Climate Action Framework lays out how the council will become carbon neutral by 2030, and how it aims to make the whole county meet the same target by 2050.
The Climate Action Framework is being used to put carbon-cutting measures at the top of the council’s work agenda. This includes practical steps like retrofitting all streetlights in Oxfordshire with more energy efficient LED lights, and exchanging its current crop of vehicles to an all-electric fleet.
But there are large policy ideas like prioritising better broadband, or ‘digital infrastructure’, over building new roads. It also means promoting bus use and cycling.
It was also agreed though that plans for experimental bus-only lanes in central Oxford were rejected. These ‘bus gates’ were unpopular with businesses and some residents, but could return as part of long term plans to reduce congestion on city roads.
Launching the plan, the council’s leader Ian Hudspeth said: “The ‘decade of action’ required on climate change has begun with the Covid 19 pandemic. It has changed our world almost overnight. The pandemic has hurt us, and it has changed us. We must not allow it to hold us back: it is our responsibility to use this time of change to achieve our goals.”