2025 Action Scorecards
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Council Climate Action Scorecards Updated Methodology (2025)

Summary

We have now published the draft methodology for the 2025 Council Climate Action Scorecards. This lays out how we'll be marking and scoring all UK councils for a second time on the actions they're taking towards net zero. The second edition of Council Climate Action Scorecard results will be released in Summer 2025.

We will mark and score all UK councils on their climate action against 93 questions in 7 different sections. The majority of changes to this methodology have been to clarify questions more clearly. You can find out more about what specific changes we have made and why in our Methodology 2025 blog here. To find out more about how we created the complete methodology in 2022 and why questions or topics were or were not included in the overall methodology, check out our blog series on the methodology here.

Jump to see the questions

There are four entirely new questions in the methodology (in Buildings & Heating, Biodiversity, Collaboration & Engagement and Transport (for Transport the new question is only for combined authorities) as well as one question in Governance & Finance on procurement where Question 6 from 2023, with a three tier criteria, has been split out for 2025 into 6a (one tier criteria) and 6b (two tier criteria).

The four new questions are:

  • Transport (for combined authorities only) Q4c: Is the combined authority transitioning the bus fleet in their area to be zero-emission?
  • Buildings & Heating 1b: Does the council have a target to retrofit all significant council buildings (excluding homes) and has this been costed?
  • Biodiversity Q10: Has the council introduced a Green Space Factor to increase habitat in new developments?
  • Collaboration & Engagement Q12: Does the council have an ongoing way for employee representative bodies (including recognised trade unions) to influence the development and delivery of the council's Climate Action Plan?

The one question that has been removed was Question 1a "Has the council reduced single use plastic in its buildings and events?" in Waste Reduction & Food, due to changes in UK law making it a legal requirement to ban the use and sale of some single use plastic.

We created this updated criteria through extensive research and consultation with council staff, councillors, campaigners and other organisations. To understand what action we will be scoring and the question weightings, please read the complete draft methodology below.

Whilst every effort has been made to make this methodology complete, Climate Emergency UK reserves the right to make changes to the methodology where deemed appropriate between now and Summer 2025. Changes may be made, for example, if national policy changes between now and Summer 2025 and this impacts our questions; or if the data needed to answer a particular question is no longer available to use. An updated methodology, if there are any changes, identical to the one used in the marking, will be published, alongside the Council Climate Action Scorecards in Summer 2025.

The Council Climate Action Scorecards is a project of Climate Emergency UK, in partnership with mySociety.

If you're interested in volunteering with us, to support others to use the Action Scorecards or help us mark the next Action Scorecards, register your interest here.

You can see the draft methodology explanation text in pdf format here. You can also view the questions and criteria in spreadsheet format here. This information is identical to this website.

Methodology Review

Following the publication of the 2023 Council Climate Action Scorecards in October 2023, we have conducted a detailed review of the Action Scorecards methodology. We conducted this review in order to improve and clarify the questions, thereby ensuring the Action Scorecards are relevant, accurate and useful for residents and councils. This review happened between January and May 2024. Climate Emergency UK reviewed the questions and reflected on feedback from the sector, councils and campaigners on the 2023 Scorecards methodology. We then invited 15 randomly selected councils, alongside sector organisations, experts, campaigners and Scorecards volunteers to an online roundtable for each section, where changes were suggested and reviewed. All invitees were also sent a short feedback form to provide comment on the suggested changes.

Following the roundtables the suggested changes to the methodology, including any new questions, criteria changes or clarifications were reviewed in detail by the 2024/25 Advisory Group.

Question Criteria

Below you can see each of the questions that councils will be scored on in 2024/25, along with some further clarification of the question criteria. We’ve also shown how each question will be scored: whether from volunteer research, FOI responses from councils, the use of national data or through a mixture of volunteer research and national data.

See the questions

Or show questions by type of council

This section will contribute 20% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 25% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 20% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 20% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

Buildings and Heating is one of the biggest sectors of carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. This section covers the main actions that councils can take to support both private rented and owned homes and socially renting households to reduce the emissions from their homes.

Buildings & Heating · Question 1a

Has the council completed extensive retrofit work on any of its significant buildings to make them low carbon?

Topic

Council buildings - retrofit

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council have done any of the following extensive retrofit works for any one of its significant buildings:
- created on-site renewable energy
- whole building retrofitting, including heat pump installations
- extensive insulation of walls and floors
- replacing gas boilers or installing a combined heating system

Clarifications

Significant council buildings refers to leisure centres, libraries, council town halls or offices, community centres, schools & colleges (not academies or private schools) or care homes.

Extensive retrofit (sometimes called deep retrofit) refers to significant works of size or scale that result in a fundamental change to the building structure and/or services. This could be a collection of lots of small retrofit enhancements, or a single larger and disruptive measure, such as installing a combined heat system.

The work must be completed, not in progress.

Buildings & Heating · Question 1b

Does the council have a target to retrofit all significant council buildings (excluding homes) and has this been costed?

Topic

Council buildings - target to retrofit

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

We will publish the criteria for this new question shortly

Clarifications

Council buildings refers to leisure centres, libraries, council town halls or offices, community centres, schools & colleges (not academies or private schools) or care homes, the councils corporate estate.

The council doesn't need to have all the funds available for the retrofit.

This includes all buildings the council is directly responsible for, council offices and any other buildings leased and managed by the council excluding homes owned or managed by the council.

Buildings & Heating · Question 2

Are the council's operations powered by renewable energy?

Topic

Council buildings - renewable energy tariff

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a green tariff that is 100% renewable or if the council creates its own energy equivalent to 20% or more of its energy consumption through energy from waste.

Second tier criteria met if the council has a green tariff with Green Energy UK plc, Good Energy Limited or Ecotricity, or if the council creates its own renewable energy equivalent to 20% of its energy consumption. This could be through on-site energy generation, or if the council has built or bought a solar/wind farm elsewhere.

Clarifications

This includes all energy that the council is directly responsible for, in council offices and any other buildings leased and managed by the council where the council pays the energy tariff.
This includes all electricity used in these buildings (not gas).
This does not include homes owned or managed by the council.

Buildings & Heating · Question 3

Are the homes owned and managed by the council energy efficient?

Topic

Council homes - EPC ratings

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if 50% or more of the council's homes receive C or above in their Environmental Performance Certificate ratings.

Second tier criteria met if 60% or more, and then third tier criteria met if 90% or more of their buildings received C or above EPC ratings.

This question applies only to councils that own or manage more than 100 council homes.

Clarifications

Environmental Performance Certificates (EPCs) show homebuyers or tenants how energy efficient the building is. The EPC contains information on potential energy costs and carbon dioxide emissions.

Council owned or managed homes includes arms-length management organisation (ALMO) if the homes are owned by the Council but not Housing Associations.

This question applies only to homes that councils have an available EPC rating for.
This question applies only to councils that own or manage more than 100 council homes.

Buildings & Heating · Question 4

Does the council have a target to retrofit all council-owned and managed homes and has this been costed?

Topic

Council homes - target to retrofit

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
Criteria met if the council has completed an exercise to measure how much, approximately, it will cost them to retrofit all homes (to EPC C or higher, or equivalent) and there is a target date for when this work will be completed by.

First tier criteria met if the target date is before 2050, second tier criteria met if the date is before 2040 and third tier criteria met if the target date is before 2030.

This question applies only to councils that own or manage more than 100 council homes.

Clarifications

The council doesn't need to have all the funds available for the retrofit.

Home retrofit is the process of making changes to existing buildings so that energy consumption and emissions are reduced. These changes also provide more comfortable and healthier homes with lower fuel bills.

Buildings & Heating · Question 5

Is the council part of a programme or partnership to support home retrofitting, through providing the skills and training needed or in other ways?

Topic

Retrofit partnerships

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if either:
- the council convenes or is a member of a local retrofit partnership, that focuses on developing the skills and training needed for retrofit or sharing knowledge around retrofitting.
Evidence of this partnership is needed. At least two of the following must be visible:
1. A named partnership with a public membership list
2. A terms of reference or aims of the group
3. Evidence of previous meetings, via notes, agendas, videos or in news stories

- alternatively, the criteria will be met if the council convenes or supports a programme for retrofitting locally through providing training or skills support.

Clarifications

The criteria will be met if this partnership is a council task and finish group or sub-committee group with external members.

Buildings & Heating · Question 6

Does the council have a staff member employed to work on retrofitting across the council area?

Topic

Staff working on retrofit

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Criteria met if a staff member is employed to work on retrofitting for 3 or more days a week and is working on any retrofit projects, including council buildings, council homes or private rented or owned households.

Staff can be as a project manager or officer on 3 or more days a week. We would accept contractors as long as they are equivalent to 3 days or more per week (0.6 FTE).

Clarifications

nan

Buildings & Heating · Question 7

Are the homes and buildings in the council area energy efficient?

Topic

EPC ratings - whole area

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if 50% or more of buildings in the area that have an EPC rating are rated C or above.

Second tier criteria met if more than 60% and then third tier criteria met if more than 90% of buildings in the area that have an EPC rating are rated C or above.

Clarifications

Environmental Performance Certificates (EPCs) show homebuyers or tenants how energy efficient the building is. The EPC contains information on potential energy costs and carbon dioxide emissions.

Not all buildings in the area have an EPC rating. We will be looking at only the ratings of the buildings that do have a rating.

Marked using data provided by UK Government, Scottish EPC Register and the Department of Finance NI

Buildings & Heating · Question 8

Is the council actively enforcing Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards of homes in the private rented sector?

Topic

Housing Efficiency Standards Enforcement

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has carried out one or more investigations in the last financial year 2023/24

Second tier criteria met if the council has carried out one or more compliance or enforcement notices in the last financial year 2023/24

Clarifications

This question is applicable to English and Welsh District and Single tier councils only.

All district and single tier councils have legal powers to enforce Minimum Energy Efficiency Standards. This legislation states that a home cannot be rented out by a landlord if the home has an EPC rating of E or lower. The council can enforce this requirement through enforcement notices and fining landlords if they continue to rent out homes that have an EPC rating of E or lower.

Buildings & Heating · Question 9

Does the council provide a service to support private homeowners to make their homes more energy efficient?

Topic

Homeowner support - retrofit

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria is met if the council is either providing a tailor-made advice to residents on home energy efficiency, or connecting residents with local tradespeople and suppliers for energy efficiency measures that can be carried out in their homes.

Clarifications

Points will not be awarded for webpages with standardised information on the council website. There must be links to a wider project or product being offered.

Buildings & Heating · Question 10

Does the council offer funding to private renters or homeowners to retrofit their homes?

Topic

Homeowner funding - retrofit

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council provides any amount of funding to any number of private renters, landlords or homeowners to retrofit their homes. This would include grant funding councils have secured from the Green Homes Grants and the Sustainable Warmth national government programmes if the council are administering them.

Clarifications

This does not include services provided under the Energy Companies Obligation to replace or upgrade boilers to homes on low income as this is already required and administered by councils. The project cannot be a trial project.

Buildings & Heating · Question 11

Does the council have a scheme to allow residents to purchase renewable energy cheaply, through collective buying?

Topic

Renewable Energy purchasing schemes

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council is running a Solar Streets or equivalent collective energy buying project.

Second tier criteria met if the council is running a Solar Together or equivalent project, such as iChoosr. Points awarded to any other scheme councils are doing that are on a similar scale to Solar Together.

Clarifications

If the project is being led by the County Council or a combined authority and all other councils in that area are involved too, then all those district councils will be awarded the points.

The project cannot be a trial project.

Marked using data provided by Solar Streets - https://solarstreets.co.uk/ and Solar Together - https://solartogether.co.uk/landing

Buildings & Heating · Question 12

Has the council supported local community renewable energy creation?

Topic

Community Renewable Energy

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if there is public information about a council working with a local community energy generation infrastructure project, such as wind, solar or hydro. Evidence of this could include:
- Being formally listed as a partner on the community energy projects' website
- Evidence on the councils' website of the council providing funding, land or other support to the community energy project.

Clarifications

Marked using data provided by Community Energy England

This section will contribute 25% to a Combined Authority’s overall score

Buildings and Heating is one of the biggest sectors of carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. Combined Authorities do not own council homes or have direct involvement with homeowners. Instead, they lead on adult education in their area, as well as economic growth so have an opportunity to influence the Green Skills needed for low carbon buildings and heating.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 1

Is the combined authority's operations powered by renewable energy?

Topic

Renewable Tariff - combined authority buildings

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a green tariff that is 100% renewable or if the council creates its own energy equivalent to 20% or more of its energy consumption through energy from waste.

Second tier criteria met if the council has a green tariff with Green Energy UK plc, Good Energy Limited or Ecotricity, or if the council creates its own renewable energy equivalent to 20% of its energy consumption. This could be through on-site energy generation, or if the council has built or bought a solar/wind farm elsewhere.

Clarifications

This includes all energy that the council is directly responsible for, in council offices and any other buildings leased and managed by the council where the council pays the energy tariff.
This includes all electricity used in these buildings (not gas).
This does not include homes owned or managed by the council.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 2

Has the combined authority supported local community renewable energy creation?

Topic

Community Renewable Energy

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if there is public information about the combined authority working with a local community energy generation infrastructure project, such as wind, solar or hydro. Evidence of this could include:
Being formally listed as a partner on the community energy projects' website
Evidence on the combined authority's website of them providing funding, land or other support to the community energy project.

Clarifications

Marked partly using data provided by Community Energy England

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 3

Is the combined authority part of a partnership to support retrofit in the area?

Topic

Retrofit Partnerships

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority convenes or is a member of a local retrofit partnership, that focuses on knowledge sharing or skills.
Evidence of this partnership is needed. At least two of the following must be visible:
1. A named partnership with a public membership list
2. A terms of reference or aims of the group
3. Evidence of previous meetings, via notes, agendas, videos or in news stories

Clarifications

The criteria will be met if this partnership is a combined authority task and finish group or sub-committee group with external members.

The partnership can be with any organisation beyond the combined authority. It could include other councils, community groups, financial institutions or local businesses.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 4

Has the combined authority produced research or a strategy understanding the scale, need and opportunity of retrofitting in its area?

Topic

Retrofit Research

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has contributed to research, strategy, evidence or business development in relation to home retrofit.

Clarifications

The research must be finished to be valid.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 5

Has the combined authority successfully raised funds for decarbonising homes and buildings through national government grants?

Topic

Funding sources

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if a combined authority has successfully bid on a government grant since 1st January 2020. The money doesn't have to be spent or the project completed in order to meet the criteria.

Clarifications

Evidence of a news story from the combined authority or listed as a successful bidder on any of the follow national government grants:
Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme (1, 2, 3a, 3b)
Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (1 and 2)
Green Homes Grant, local authority delivery (phase 1a, 1b, 2 and 3)
Sustainable Warmth Competition (local authority delivery 3 and Home Upgrade Grant 1)

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 6

Does the combined authority have a detailed plan or strategy to create the green skills needed to mitigate and adapt to the climate emergency?

Topic

Net-Zero Embedded in Skills Strategy

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has a skills strategy or similar which explicitly covers how they will create the green skills needed locally.

This information could be in a combined authority's skills strategy or other strategies.

Clarifications

A chapter or equivalent on green skills in a climate action plan, corporate plan or homes or a building strategy would also be valid for a point.
The plan must cover multiple years.

Green Jobs and Greens Skills are ones that contribute to preserving or restoring the environment. They have a focus on either reducing carbon emissions, improving energy and raw materials efficiency, protecting and restoring nature, minimising waste and pollution, adapting to the effects of climate change or making similar environmental improvements.
Green Jobs and Skills can be in traditional sectors such as manufacturing and construction, or in new, emerging green sectors such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. Sustainability managers in businesses, green transport officers and thermal heating specialists are all examples of green jobs.
Definitions from International Labour Organisation and Friends of the Earth.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 7

Is the combined authority part of a programme to support green jobs creation in the area?

Topic

Green Skills Partnerships

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

This must be above and beyond providing green skills training in their adult education budget.

If the combined authority has run a Green Skills Bootcamp or equivalent programmes this is valid for a point. The programme must guarantee interviews with potential employers after completing training to be valid for a point.

The programme can be done in partnership with any organisation beyond the combined authority. It could include other councils, community groups, education providers, local businesses, key employers in the area or others.

Clarifications

Green Jobs and Greens Skills are ones that contribute to preserving or restoring the environment. They have a focus on either reducing carbon emissions, improving energy and raw materials efficiency, protecting and restoring nature, minimising waste and pollution, adapting to the effects of climate change or making similar environmental improvements.
Green Jobs and Skills can be in traditional sectors such as manufacturing and construction, or in new, emerging green sectors such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. Sustainability managers in businesses, green transport officers and thermal heating specialists are all examples of green jobs.
Definitions from International Labour Organisation and Friends of the Earth.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 8

Does the combined authority run an employment or careers programme or project to encourage and promote green jobs?

Topic

Greens Skills Promotion

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Point awarded if the combined authority provides a supplementary employment or careers programme to encourage and promote green jobs.
Activities can include, but not limited to: stand alone websites, funding, or events promoting green careers at schools and colleges .

Clarifications

Green Jobs and Greens Skills are ones that contribute to preserving or restoring the environment. They have a focus on either reducing carbon emissions, improving energy and raw materials efficiency, protecting and restoring nature, minimising waste and pollution, adapting to the effects of climate change or making similar environmental improvements.
Green Jobs and Skills can be in traditional sectors such as manufacturing and construction, or in new, emerging green sectors such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. Sustainability managers in businesses, green transport officers and thermal heating specialists are all examples of green jobs.
Definitions from International Labour Organisation and Friends of the Earth.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 9a

Has the combined authority funded a significant number of adult education skills courses or training advertised as skills for Green Jobs?

Topic

Green Skills Training

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has provided more than 30 green skills adult education courses in the last three academic years.

This is the total number of adult education courses that the combined authority advertises as Green Skills or Green Jobs that they have funded, in part of partial. If the combined authority classifies them as a green job/skill, then they will be counted.

This includes courses related to the building of or maintaining of residential homes or commercial buildings as well as other Green Skills, such as in relation to Electric Vehicles, Digital Skills, Education, Biodiversity and Conservation management and others.

Any accredited course is valid for a point. There is no minimum length of the course required to be valid for the point.
Courses that are part of a Skills Bootcamp are valid. This question is not limited to Skills Bootcamps courses only, other courses are valid.

Clarifications

Green Jobs and Greens Skills are ones that contribute to preserving or restoring the environment. They have a focus on either reducing carbon emissions, improving energy and raw materials efficiency, protecting and restoring nature, minimising waste and pollution, adapting to the effects of climate change or making similar environmental improvements.
Green Jobs and Skills can be in traditional sectors such as manufacturing and construction, or in new, emerging green sectors such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. Sustainability managers in businesses, green transport officers and thermal heating specialists are all examples of green jobs.
Definitions from International Labour Organisation and Friends of the Earth.

The courses can be free.

Buildings & Heating & Green Skills (CA) · Question 9b

Has the combined authority had a significant number of people completing adult education courses or training in the last three academic years that they funded and advertised as skills for Green jobs?

Topic

Green Skills Training

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

This question is asking how many people have been trained on the courses funded and advertised by the combined authority as Green skills/jobs in the last three academic years.

Criteria met if the combined authority has trained more than 1,000 people in green skills through adult education courses in the last academic year.

This includes courses related to retrofitting, the building of or maintaining of residential homes or commercial buildings as well as other Green Skills, such as in relation to Electric Vehicles, Digital Skills, Education, Biodiversity and Conservation management and others.

Any accredited course is valid for a point. There is no minimum length of the course required to be valid for the point.
Courses that are part of a Skills Bootcamp are valid. This question is not limited to Skills Bootcamps courses only, other courses are valid.

Clarifications

This is the total number of people who have completed green skills training courses in the last academic year.

Green Jobs and Greens Skills are ones that contribute to preserving or restoring the environment. They have a focus on either reducing carbon emissions, improving energy and raw materials efficiency, protecting and restoring nature, minimising waste and pollution, adapting to the effects of climate change or making similar environmental improvements.
Green Jobs and Skills can be in traditional sectors such as manufacturing and construction, or in new, emerging green sectors such as renewable energy and energy efficiency. Sustainability managers in businesses, green transport officers and thermal heating specialists are all examples of green jobs.
Definitions from International Labour Organisation and Friends of the Earth.

This section will contribute 20% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 5% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 30% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 15% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

Transport is the other biggest sector of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. This section covers the main enabling actions councils can take to reduce car use and encourage more sustainable transport within their area.

Transport · Question 1

Is the council transitioning their vehicle fleet to electric?

Topic

Council Fleet

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria

First tier criteria met if 10% or more of the council's fleet are electric vehicles.

Second tier criteria met if over 50% or more of the council's fleet are electric vehicles

Clarifications

A council's fleet includes council owned or leased vehicles, and may include street cleaners and waste collection vehicles.

Usually the breakdown of the council fleet by vehicle type is not published, therefore we will just take the stated total fleet number and number of electric vehicles.

Transport · Question 2

Has the council set up or supported a shared transport scheme that can be used across their whole area?

Topic

Shared Transport Schemes

Question Weighting

Unweighted

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met for each type of scheme where a member of the public can hire a vehicle (e.g. car/scooter/bike/mobility device) within the local authorities area.

The following schemes will be awarded points:
- Car share scheme of any size in the area. Including:
- Community car clubs.
- Car clubs provided by private companies
- Hiring of council vehicles when not in use
- Bike share scheme
- E-bike or cargo bike share scheme
- E-scooter scheme
- Mobility Devices
- Wheels 2 Work scheme

Trial schemes that are active at the time of marking will be accepted.

Clarifications

Marked initially using Coordinated Mobility's publicly available data on shared transport schemes.

Transport · Question 3

Does the council have enforced school streets across its area?

Topic

School Streets

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two tier criteria
First tier criteria met if there are 10 or more enforced school streets.

Second tier criteria met if there are 30 or more enforced school streets.

Clarifications

A school street is a street outside of a school that is closed to private vehicles for a time period before and after the school opens and shuts. This is to encourage a safe route for children to walk or roll to school, and improve air quality on the roads outside schools.

Enforced school streets are when the road is blocked during the hours decided or there are cameras used to stop private vehicles (often with exceptions for residents) to travel down the street.

A trial school street, which is active at the time of marking, will be counted but only if the local authority is over the total of 10/30 with trial/permanent school streets. School streets must be year round to be accepted.

Transport · Question 4

Is the council committed to making 20mph the standard speed limit for most restricted roads?

Topic

Speed limits

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Criteria met if you are verified by 20's Plenty For Us as having 20mph as the default speed limit for restricted roads.

Clarifications

Restricted roads are roads that due to lighting frequency are usually 30mph as according to national speed limits.

Marked using 20's Plenty for Us list of Councils to have implemented a 20mph default: https://www.20splenty.org/20mph_places. 20's Plenty For Us looks for councils that have a policy for setting 20mph for most roads: residential and high street roads.

This will include local authorities that have not implemented a 20mph speed limit for restricted roads but have passed the policy, as it can take 2-3 years to fully implement due to replacing the road signs.

Where a national government has introduced 20mph as the norm for restricted roads all councils within that nation will be awarded the point.

Transport · Question 5a

Has the council introduced a Clean Air Zone or Low-Emission Zone?

Topic

Clean Air Zone

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if a council has implemented a Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone that is currently in operation.

For this question the Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone does not have to require charges for private vehicles.

Local authorities that do not breach the WHO air quality levels for NO2 in 25% or more of their LSOA's (therefore they don't receive any negative points for Questions 12a) will not be marked against this question.

Clarifications

A Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone is where targeted action is being taken to improve air quality and reduce the number of polluting vehicles and is usually defined over a certain area, such as a city centre.

To be awarded points in the Scorecards the zone must be more than one street

Transport · Question 5b

Does the council's Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone require charges for private vehicles?

Topic

Clean Air Zone

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if a council has implemented a Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone that is currently in operation and it charges for private vehicles.

For this question the Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone does have to require charges for private vehicles.

Local authorities that do not breach the WHO air quality levels for NO2 in 25% or more of their LSOA's (therefore they don't receive any negative points for Questions 12a) will not be marked against this question.

Clarifications

A Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone is where targeted action is being taken to improve air quality and reduce the number of polluting vehicles and is usually defined over a certain area, such as a city centre.

To be awarded points in the Scorecards the zone must be more than one street.

Transport · Question 6

Has the council taken clear steps to support active travel?

Topic

Active Travel

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Four-tier criteria

First tier criteria met if the local authority received a "Rating 1" on Active Travel England's capability ratings.

Further points awarded if the local authority received a "Rating 2", "Rating 3", or "Rating 4", with points awarded consecutively.

Clarifications

We will use Active Travel England's capability ratings to score this question. This question is applicable to English transport authorities only.

The question will be scored out of a total of 4 points, with 1 point awarded for a "Rating 1" and 4 points awarded for a "Rating 4". No points will be awarded for a "Rating 0".

Active Travel England's capability ratings can be found on this page:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/local-authority-active-travel-capability-ratings/local-authority-active-travel-capability-ratings-accessible-version

Where a Combined Authority has been marked for the region the Combined Authorities score will be applied to every local authority within the area.

Transport · Question 7

Does the council have controlled parking zones across all the residential areas of the local authority?

Topic

Parking

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a controlled parking zone across any area of the local authority. This can be for any time period stated.

Second tier criteria met if the council has controlled parking zones across the whole area of the local authority. This can be for any time period stated.

Clarifications

A controlled parking zone is where Residential Permit Parking is only permitted.

By making areas residential permit parking only it discourages short trips by car, as parking is not as readily available.

If a rural authority, or an authority with rural areas, has parking permits for all of it's urbanised areas (cities and/or towns) then this will be counted as being across the whole of the local authority, even if this does not include the whole of the geographic area.

Transport · Question 8a

Are there any low emission buses used within the council's area?

Topic

Buses

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if there are any low-emission buses in use across the area.

Clarifications

Low emissions buses are defined as any buses that are electric, hydrogen or plug-in hybrid buses.

Transport · Question 8b

Is bus ridership within the council's area high?

Topic

Buses

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria:
First tier criteria met if bus passenger journeys are over 75 per head of population

Second tier criteria met if bus passenger journeys are over 150 per head of population.

Clarifications

This question is applicable to English transport authorities only.

Where the data is combined at a ITA level - we are scoring all constituent councils as one. For example, all councils within Greater Manchester ITA will be scored according to the Greater Manchester ITA bus ridership figures.

Marked using Department for Transport data (BUS 0110): Passenger journeys on local bus services per head of population by local authority: England - https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/bus01-local-bus-passenger-journeys

Transport · Question 9

Does the council have a workplace parking levy?

Topic

Workplace Parking Levy

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if a workplace parking levy is in place by the time of marking.

The workplace parking levy does not have to cover the whole of the council's area.

For scoring purposes we will count a scheme as implemented if it is currently in place, or the scheme has been approved by the council with a date set for the start of the implementation.

Clarifications

A workplace parking levy is a fee paid by businesses, or their employees, for parking spaces. This is used to discourage commuting by car thereby reducing emissions, improving congestion and improving air quality.

Transport · Question 10

Has the council supported the expansion of a public network of electric vehicle chargers?

Topic

EV charging

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has over 60 public chargers per 100,000 residents.

Second tier criteria met if the council has over 434 chargers per 100,000 residents.

Clarifications

This question is scored using the UK Government's data on publicly available EV chargers within the council's area. This includes all publicly available EV chargers, rather than just council owned or installed, as councils would still have to approve any public EV charger in their area.

We have chosen the two tier criteria to challenge councils. 60 public chargers per 100,000 residents has been achieved by a significant proportion of councils but many have also not yet reached this level.

The higher level of 434 chargers is based on the UK Government's 2030 target for 300,000 public EV chargers. To achieve the same format we divided (300,000 by the Office for National Statistics 2030 projected population 69.2 million) and multiplied this figure by 100,000. Rounding to the nearest EV charger gave us 434 chargers per 100,000 residents.

Marked using Zap Maps - https://www.zap-map.com/ - publicly available data on EV chargers, which is available using the UK Government - https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/electric-vehicle-charging-device-statistics-july-2022. Please note, we will use the most recent available data in the 2024 scoring process.

Transport · Question 11

Has the council approved, expanded or built a high carbon transport project since 2020?

Topic

High Carbon transport project

Question Weighting

nan

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Negatively Scored Question

-5% of the maximum possible section score will be deducted if the council has approved, expanded or built a road since 2020.

-15% of the maximum possible section score will be deducted if the council has approved, expanded or built an airport since 2020.

A total penalty mark of -20% of the total section will be applied if the council has aprooved, expanded or built new roads and airports.

Clarifications

A high carbon transport project is defined as a road or an airport.

An expanded road or road junction is one that has increased capacity for motor vehicle traffic, we are not counting bus lanes, cycle infrastructure, or pedestrian infrastructure.

The intention of this question is to understand overall increases in road capacity, rather than recent housing developments. We will exclude minor roads built exclusively to connect new housing to the pre-existing road network.

Approved = Passed a planning application in favour of expansion or construction of a road/airport since 2019.

Expanded = A road/airport has been expanded after 2019, even if it received planning approval before 2019. In the case of airports the expansion would include increasing passenger numbers.

Built = A road/airport has been built after 2019, even if it received planning approval before 2019.

Transport · Question 12a

Do the NO2 levels in a significant proportion of neighbourhoods within the council’s area exceed the safe World Health Organisation (WHO) air pollution guidelines?

Topic

Air Quality - NO2

Question Weighting

nan

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Negatively Scored Question - Two-tier

A council will be negatively scored if they have 25% or more LSOAs (Lower-layer Super Output Areas) above the World Health Organisations (WHO) NO2 guidelines.

Negative marks applied for the first tier: -2% of the maximum possible section score

A council will be further negatively scored if they have 75% or more LSOAs (Lower-layer Super Output Areas) above the World Health Organisations (WHO) NO2 guidelines.

Negative marks applied for the second tier: -6% of the maximum possible section score.

Clarifications

NO2 - Nitrogen dioxide, or NO2, is a gaseous air pollutant composed of nitrogen and oxygen and is one of a group of related gases called nitrogen oxides, or NOx. NO2 forms when fossil fuels such as coal, oil, gas or diesel are burned at high temperatures. NO2 in the UK is mostly a result of fossil fuel cars. Data for NO2 in the UK is strong due to a good network of national sensors therefore we have used a stronger criteria.

LSOAs (Lower-layer Super Output Areas) are small areas designed to be of a similar population size, with an average of approximately 1,500 residents or 650 households. They are used to form the basis of the census.

WHO NO2 guidelines: Nitrogen dioxide (NO2) concentrations of 10 µg/m3 annual average.

Transport · Question 12b

Do the PM 2.5 levels in a significant proportion of neighbourhoods in the council’s area exceed the safe World Health Organisation (WHO) air pollution guidelines?

Topic

Air Quality - PM2.5

Question Weighting

nan

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Negatively Scored Question - Two-tier

A council will be negatively scored if they have 25% or more LSOAs (Lower-layer Super Output Areas) above the World Health Organisations (WHO) PM 2.5 guidelines.

Negative marks applied for the first tier: -2% of the maximum possible section score.

A council will be further negatively scored if they have 75% or more LSOAs (Lower-layer Super Output Areas) above the World Health Organisations (WHO) PM 2.5 guidelines.

Negative marks applied for the second tier: -4% of the maximum possible section score.

Clarifications

PM 2.5 (Particulate Matter 2.5) is the tiny particles or droplets in the air that are two and one half microns or less in width. PM 2.5 can be caused by burning fossil fuels, tyre wear and brake dust from cars and even weather variations. Data for PM 2.5 is less accurate at the local level and relies upon modelling due to a lack of national sensors.

LSOAs (Lower-layer Super Output Areas) are small areas designed to be of a similar population size, with an average of approximately 1,500 residents or 650 households. They are used to form the basis of the census.

WHO PM2.5 guidelines: PM 2.5 concentrations of 5 μg/m3 annual average.

This section will contribute 25% to a Combined Authority’s overall score

Transport is the other biggest sector of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. This section covers the main actions combined authorities can take at a broader level to reduce car use and encourage more sustainable transport within their area.

Transport (CA) · Question 1a

Does the combined authority's Transport Plan include the combined authority's net-zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Transport Plan

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the Transport Plan is in date and the combined authority's area-wide net zero target is included within the transport strategy.

One of the key priorities in the Transport Plan must be to tackle the climate emergency or reduce emissions.

Clarifications

We will accept other language for target dates, such as carbon neutrality.

The net zero target date must be an area-wide target, either the UK Government's national target, the devolved nation's target or the combined authority's area-wide net zero target.

Transport (CA) · Question 1b

Does the combined authority's Transport Plan include expanding or building a high carbon transport project?

Topic

Transport Plan - High Carbon projects

Question Weighting

negative question

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

-5% of the total section score deducted if the combined authority details the expansion or building of new roads in the Transport Strategy.

Penalty mark of -15% of the total section score deducted if the combined authority details the expansion or building of new airports in the Transport Strategy.

A total penalty mark of -20% of the total section will be applied if the combined authority has detailed the expansion of building of new roads and airports.

Clarifications

A high carbon transport project is defined as a road or an airport.

Transport (CA) · Question 2

Has the combined authority set up or supported a shared transport scheme that can be used in their area?

Topic

Shared Transport Schemes

Question Weighting

Unweighted

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Criteria met for each type of scheme where a member of the public can hire a vehicle (e.g. car/scooter/bike/mobility device) within the combined authorities area.

The following schemes will be awarded points:
- Car share scheme of any size in the area. Including:
- Community car clubs.
- Car clubs provided by private companies
- Hiring of combined authority vehicles when not in use
- Bike share scheme
- E-bike or cargo bike share scheme
- E-scooter scheme
- Mobility Devices
- Wheels 2 Work scheme

Trial schemes that are active at the time of marking will be accepted.

Clarifications

Marked initially using publicly available data on shared transport schemes from Coordinated Mobility.

If schemes are within the combined authority area then the combined authority will be awarded the point

Transport (CA) · Question 3

Has the combined authority supported the expansion of the train network?

Topic

Trains

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the combined authority has published a rail strategy, which includes the opening of new or the reopening of any stations or train lines.

Points awarded if the combined authority has invested in new zero emission train stock.

Points awarded if the combined authority has provided funding for extensive retrofit or opening of new or reopening of any stations and/or train lines.

Clarifications

Zero emission train stock would include any trains that run via electric voltage or they are hydrogen powered.

Extensive retrofit (sometimes called deep retrofit) refers to significant works of size or scale that result in a fundamental change to the building structure and/or services.

Projects (reopenings/extensive retrofit/new train stock) which are due to happen will not be awarded points. The project must have occurred or be under way.

Transport (CA) · Question 4a

Does the combined authority's bus service improvement plan include a target for the bus fleet to be zero emission?

Topic

Buses - Zero Emission Fleet Target

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the combined authority has a target for the bus fleet to be completely zero emission by 2040.

Second tier criteria met if the combined authority has a target for the bus fleet to be zero emission by 2030.

Clarifications

Zero emission bus fleet could include any buses that are battery or hydrogen powered.

Transport (CA) · Question 4b

Is bus ridership within the combined authority area high?

Topic

Buses - Ridership

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if bus passenger journeys are over 75 per head of population

Second tier criteria met if bus passenger journeys are over 150 per head of the population

Clarifications

Marked using Department for Transport data (BUS 01): Passenger journeys on local bus services per head of population by local authority: England - https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/bus01-local-bus-passenger-journeys

Transport (CA) · Question 4c

Is the combined authority transitioning the bus fleet in their area to be zero-emission?

Topic

Buses - Zero Emission Fleet

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if 10% of the bus fleet is zero emission.

Second tier criteria met if 25% of the bus fleet is zero emission.

Third tier criteria met if 50% of the bus fleet is zero emission.

Clarifications

Bus fleet within their area is defined as any buses that are stored overnight in the combined authorities geographic area.

Zero emission buses include any buses that are battery or hydrogen powered.

Transport (CA) · Question 5

Has the combined authority introduced integrated ticketing for public transport?

Topic

Integrated Ticketing

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the combined authority has implemented, or has a firm timetable with a published date to implement, integrated ticketing for buses within the combined authority area.

Second tier criteria met if the combined authority has implemented, or has a firm timetable with a published date to implement, integrated ticketing across all public transport including buses, rail, trams and shared active travel schemes - where they have these modes of transport - within the combined authority area.

Clarifications

Integrated ticketing allows a person to make a journey that involves transfers within or between different transport modes with a single ticket or payment card.

Transport (CA) · Question 6a

Does the combined authority have a Clean Air Zone or Low-Emission Zone within its area?

Topic

Clean Air Zone

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if a combined authority has implemented a Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone that is currently in operation

For this question the Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone does not have to require charges for private vehicles.

Clarifications

A Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone is where targeted action is being taken to improve air quality and reduce the number of polluting vehicles and is usually defined over a certain area, such as a city centre.

A clean air zone that has been implemented by a constituent authority will count towards this point.

Transport (CA) · Question 6b

Does the combined authority have a Clean Air Zone or Low-Emission Zone within its area that requires charges for private vehicles?

Topic

Clean Air Zone

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if a combined authority has implemented a Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone that is currently in operation and it charges for private vehicles.

For this question the Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone does have to require charges for private vehicles.

Clarifications

A Clean Air Zone or Low Emission Zone is where targeted action is being taken to improve air quality and reduce the number of polluting vehicles and is usually defined over a certain area, such as a city centre.

A clean air zone that has been implemented by a constituent authority will count towards this point.

Transport (CA) · Question 7

Has the combined authority provided support for active travel schemes?

Topic

Active Travel

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

First tier criteria met if the local authority received a "Rating 1" on Active Travel England's capability ratings.

Further points awarded if the local authority received a "Rating 2", "Rating 3", or "Rating 4", with points awarded consecutively.

Clarifications

Active Travel England's capability ratings can be found here:
https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/local-authority-active-travel-capability-ratings/local-authority-active-travel-capability-ratings-accessible-version

Where a Combined Authority has been marked for the region the Combined Authorities score will be applied to every local authority within the area.

Transport (CA) · Question 8

Has the combined authority supported the expansion of a public network of electric vehicle chargers?

Topic

EV charging

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the combined authority has over 60 public chargers per 100,000 residents.

Second tier criteria met if the combined authority has over 434 chargers per 100,000 residents.

Clarifications

This question is marked using the UK Government's data on publicly available EV chargers within the combined authorities area. This includes all publicly available EV chargers, rather than just council owned or installed, as combined authorities provide funding and support for public EV charger in their area.

We have chosen the two tier criteria to challenge combined authorities. 60 public chargers per 100,000 residents has been achieved by a significant number of areas but many have also not yet reached this level.

The higher level of 434 chargers is based on the UK Government's 2030 target for 300,000 public EV chargers. To achieve the same format we divided (300,000 by the Office for National Statistics 2030 projected population 69.2 million) and multiplied this figure by 100,000. Rounding to the nearest EV charger gave us 434 chargers per 100,000 residents.

Marked using Zap Maps - https://www.zap-map.com/ - publicly available data on EV chargers, which is available using the UK Government - https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/electric-vehicle-charging-device-statistics-july-2022. Please note, we will use the most recent available data in the 2023 scoring process.

This section will contribute 10% to a Combined Authority’s overall score

The climate emergency is deeply connected to the ecological emergency. This section covers how combined authorities can support the protection of and increased biodiversity in the area. This section also covers the enabling role combined authorities can play in supporting renewable energy generation locally and embedding net-zero targets into their area-wide strategic planning.

Planning & Biodiversity (CA) · Question 1

Does the combined authority's Spatial Planning Strategy include the combined authority's net-zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Spatial Planning Strategy

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the Spatial Planning Strategy is in date and the net-zero target is included within the Spatial Planning strategy, although any date for the net-zero target would be sufficient.

One of the key priorities in the Spatial Planning Strategy must be to tackle the climate emergency or reduce emissions. The priority to take climate action must be a stand alone priority, listed as one of the councils core priorities or equivalent. If the core priority is a more general 'Sustainability', 'Environment' or 'Greener City/Area' and climate action is a priority within this core priority this would get the point.

Clarifications

We will accept other language for target dates, including “carbon neutrality” or “carbon budget”.

If the Spatial Planning Strategy references a national net-zero target it must still clearly be an objective of the local plan to meet the national target, and rather than the national target just being stated.

Planning & Biodiversity (CA) · Question 2

Does the combined authority identify suitable areas for new solar energy, wind developments and district heat networks?

Topic

Area wide Energy Mapping

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the combined authority has a map detailing where solar energy can be built within the whole combined authority area.

Points awarded if the combined authority has a map detailing where wind energy can be built within the whole combined authority area.

Points awarded if the combined authority has a map detailing where a district heat network can be built within the whole combined authority area.

Clarifications

This can include if the combined authority has conducted Local Area Energy Mapping - but only if the mapping done within the area contains the mapping for either district heat, wind and/or solar.

Criteria is not met if a constituent authority has produced maps for their own area but the combined authority has not done the mapping across the whole of the combined authorities area.

Planning & Biodiversity (CA) · Question 3

Has the combined authority mapped the areas of opportunity for biodiversity?

Topic

Mapping biodiversity opportunity areas

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has a map across its whole region detailing the opportunity areas for biodiversity opportunities. This could include mapping done as part of creating the local nature recovering strategy.

Clarifications

Opportunity areas for biodiversity is defined as detailing the areas where biodiversity can be increased through habitat creation or improvement.

Planning & Biodiversity (CA) · Question 4

Does the combined authority have a natural capital investment plan?

Topic

Natural Capital Investment

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has a natural capital investment plan.

Clarifications

Natural Capital investment plan - a plan which details the natural resources and environmental features in a given area, regarded as having economic value or providing a service to humankind alongside the funding opportunities that can be sought to enact the plan.

Planning & Biodiversity (CA) · Question 5

Does the combined authority have a target to increase tree cover across its area?

Topic

Tree Cover

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has publicly set a target to increase tree cover.

Clarifications

nan

Planning & Biodiversity (CA) · Question 6

Does the combined authority provide funding for community action on biodiversity, for example through an environment fund or biodiversity action fund?

Topic

Biodiversity Community Funding

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Point awarded if the combined authority has established a community biodiversity action fund or similar, provided the following criteria are met:
- The fund is at least £500,000 or higher. Where the overall amount of funding isn't clear, it will be assumed that funds awarding individual grants over £10,000 or up to £100,000 will meet this criteria.
- The fund is accessible to community groups, including where relevant parish councils

This is a ring-fenced fund that a combined authority has created to spend on biodiversity action locally for other organisations and volunteer groups.

The criteria must clearly be about biodiversity action projects and those who apply must complete some sort of application to define their planned biodiversity activities.

Clarifications

More general community or environment funds (such as the LCR Community Environment Fund) will be awarded if they specify that biodiversity projects will be supported.

The fund must be current - either accepting nominations in 2024, or awarding funding from January 2023.

This section will contribute 15% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 25% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 5% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 15% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

This section focuses primarily on how councils are using their planning powers, primarily through their Local Plans, to ensure low emission new buildings and homes, as well as ensuring new developments are built to minimise their environmental impact. This section also covers the renewable energy generation and fossil fuel generation planning applications in the area.

Planning & Land Use · Question 1

Is the council's area-wide net zero target a strategic objective of the Local Plan?

Topic

Net zero in Local Plan

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the Local Plan includes:
- reaching net zero as a strategic objective of the Local Plan
- The council's area-wide net zero target date is also found within the Plan.

Clarifications

An area-wide net zero target is the target that the council has set to achieve net zero across the councils geographic boundaries.

Reaching net zero must be part of the strategic objectives listed initially in the council's Local Plan - even if the target date is not listed in the strategic objective. This is because the objectives are broader and Joint Local Plans may have different targets between the local authorities.

We will accept other language for target dates, including carbon neutrality or the carbon budget the council has committed to stay within.

If the Local Plan references a national net zero target it must still be a strategic objective of the local plan to meet the national target, rather than the national target just being stated.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 2

Has the council committed to building all future council-owned or managed housing to a high energy efficiency or operationally net zero standard?

Topic

Council homes - energy efficient and low carbon

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a policy to build new council-owned or managed housing as highly energy efficient or operationally net zero with the policy implemented from 2030 to 2040.

Second tier criteria met if the council has a policy to build new council owned or managed housing as highly energy efficient or operationally net zero with the policy already implemented or with implementation by 2030.

Clarifications

This question applies only to councils that own or manage more than 100 council homes.

"High energy efficiency" includes building new council owned or managed housing building standards such as Passivhaus/BREAM excellent or LEED standard or a similar council own standard.

For operationally net zero policies, we will accept those that define this as only concerning regulated emissions. Definitions for operationally net zero and regulated emissions are below.

Operationally net zero: "When the amount of carbon emissions associated with the building’s operational energy on an annual basis is zero or negative. A net zero carbon building is highly energy efficient and powered from on-site and/or off-site renewable energy sources, with any remaining carbon balance offset.” Definition from:
https://ukgbc.s3.eu-west-2.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/05150856/Net-Zero-Carbon-Buildings-A-framework-definition.pdf

Regulated emissions: "Emissions generated through building energy consumption resulting from the specification of controlled, fixed building services and fittings, including space heating and cooling, hot water, ventilation, fans, pumps and lighting. Such energy uses are inherent in the design of a building." For more information: https://www.designingbuildings.co.uk/wiki/Regulated_and_unregulated_energy_consumption

Council-owned or managed housing: This includes arms-length management organisation (ALMO) if the homes are owned by the Council but not Housing Associations.

Planning & Land Use · Question 3a

Does the council require new homes to make an improvement on the Part L building regulations?

Topic

New Homes - Low Carbon Requirements

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the council has a policy that requires a reduction in carbon/energy of new homes within the councils area that is 19% higher than the Part L building regulations.

This would be the same as Scottish councils requiring "Silver standard" as a minimum.

Clarifications

Part L building regulations are the English national standard building regulations, which define the energy performance and carbon emissions in new homes.

Councils can require improvements that require lower emissions than the current building regulations.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 3b

Does the council require a fabric first approach for new development?

Topic

New Homes - Energy Efficiency Requirements

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

The criteria will be met by English councils if they have a policy that exceeds the minimum government's building regulations on the Part L Target for Fabric Energy Efficiency.

Alternatively, the criteria will be met for councils that have a policy with a space heating requirement that exceeds the minimum government's building regulations.

For Scottish councils, the criteria will be met if the council requires developers to meet the Silver or Gold building standards.

Clarifications

The Part L target for Fabric Energy Efficiency defines the efficiency of the building fabric, which includes the U-values, air tightness and thermal bridging - the parts of the building that lose heat.

A fabric first approach by a council would require improvements on the national standard thereby ensuring new homes are energy efficient.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 3c

Does the council set a requirement that all new homes to be built must be operationally (regulated) net zero?

Topic

New Homes - Net zero requirements

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council requires new homes to be operationally net zero with the policy implemented from 2030 to 2040.

Second tier criteria met if the council requires new homes to be operationally net zero with the policy already implemented since 2019 or with implementation by 2030.

Any date to implement the policy after 2040 would not be awarded points.

This would be equivalent for Scottish authorities to mandate the 'Platinum' building standard for carbon emissions for all new buildings.

Clarifications

For operationally net zero policies, we will accept those that define this as only concerning regulated emissions. Definitions for operationally net zero and regulated emissions are below.

Operationally net zero: "When the amount of carbon emissions associated with the building’s operational energy on an annual basis is zero or negative. A net zero carbon building is highly energy efficient and powered from on-site and/or off-site renewable energy sources, with any remaining carbon balance offset.” Definition from:
https://ukgbc.s3.eu-west-2.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/05150856/Net-Zero-Carbon-Buildings-A-framework-definition.pdf

Regulated emissions: "Emissions generated through building energy consumption resulting from the specification of controlled, fixed building services and fittings, including space heating and cooling, hot water, ventilation, fans, pumps and lighting. Such energy uses are inherent in the design of a building." For more information: https://www.designingbuildings.co.uk/wiki/Regulated_and_unregulated_energy_consumption

If the council is achieving net zero homes through cash-in-lieu contributions or offsets this will not count for this question. However, if the council provides an exception that offsetting is allowed where a net zero home may not be technically feasible this will still be valid.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 4

Does the council require developers to carry out a whole life-cycle carbon assessment of new build developments?

Topic

New Builds - Embodied Emissions

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the council requires developers to carry out a whole life-cycle carbon assessment for new developments.

Clarifications

Whole Life-Cycle Carbon (WLC) emissions are the carbon emissions resulting from the materials, construction and the use of a building over its entire life, including its demolition and disposal. A WLC assessment provides a true picture of a building’s carbon impact on the environment. For example it takes account of the embodied energy of the materials.

If this policy is applied for all new developments but does not apply for small scale developments (in England this is defined as any development under 10 homes) then the council will still score the point.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 5

Does the council require a higher level of water efficiency for all new homes?

Topic

New Builds - Water Efficiency

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the council requires the lower level of water use - stated as 110 litres per person per day - for new homes.

This would be the same as Scottish councils requiring "Silver standard" or "Gold standard" as a minimum for new homes.

Clarifications

The council doesn't have to be defined as in a water stressed area to adopt the 110 litres per person per day standard for new build development - but a clear local need should be demonstrated. It should be noted that over half of England is defined as in a water stressed area: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/water-stressed-areas-2021-classification

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 6

Has the council removed minimum parking requirements for new residential homes across their area?

Topic

Car dependency - Parking Standards

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First criteria met if the council has removed minimum parking requirements for new developments in a part of the council's area.

Second tier criteria met if there are no minimum parking requirements across the whole of the council's area.

Clarifications

Minimum parking requirements removed in a part of the council's geographic boundary means minimum parking requirements exist apart from in a designated area. In a rural council this could mean minimum parking requirements have been removed only for the main town or in an urban council they have been removed only for a central area.

Minimum parking requirements for disabled spaces will be exempt from this question - if the council's only minimum parking requirements refer to disabled spaces, this will be enough to get the point.

Guidance for parking requirements, including indicative parking standards, will also be exempt as this will only be deemed guidance

Planning & Land Use · Question 7

Does the council include a policy in the Local Plan to create 15/20 minute neighbourhoods?

Topic

Sustainable Neighbourhoods

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the Local Plan includes a policy to create 15/20 minute neighbourhoods. To meet the criteria the policy would have to include a definition of what a 15/20 minute community is, including:
- What key services would be required within 15/20 minutes of new homes.
- How it will be measured, for example 15 minutes by bike, walking, bus. As the crow flies distances will not meet the criteria.

If an authority has defined a specific zone where 15/20 minute neighbourhood policy principles would apply, like the main town in a rural area, then this would get the mark.

Clarifications

Synonyms for 15/20 minute neighbourhoods include: Healthy Streets Approach, Complete Neighbourhoods, Complete Communities.

We will also accept a policy to create the 30 minute community that has been adapted for rural areas. The definitions of key services and how will it be measured will need to be included for a policy on 30 minute communities to be accepted for the mark.

This policy must be found in the Local Plan, Corporate Plan or an Area Action Plan.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 8

Has the council committed to avoiding new building developments on the functional flood plain?

Topic

Flood plain

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the Local Plan states that there is a ban, or avoidance to building on the functional flood plain.

The criteria will also be met if a policy states that any new development will only replace the footprint of current development.

Clarifications

The functional flood plain is defined as a 3b flood plain by local authorities in England and Scotland, and Zone C in Wales: https://www.ambiental.co.uk/flood-zones/

The functional floodplain is the most at risk area for flooding.

If the policy makes clear that in Flood Zone 3b (or Zone C) only essential infrastructure and water compatible uses, as defined in the 2023 NPPF, will be allowed then this will be enough to get the points.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 9

Does the council have a minimum requirement for on-site renewable energy generation for new building development?

Topic

Renewable Energy Generation in New Development

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a policy for any minimum level of onsite renewable energy generation for new building development across the council's area.

Second tier criteria met if the council has a policy that requires 20%, or above, onsite renewable energy generation for new building development across the council's area.

Clarifications

If this policy is expressed in terms of carbon reduction of energy by requiring the installation of renewable energy, instead of renewable energy usage, then the point would be awarded. A 15% reduction in carbon emissions through installing renewable energy will be treated as equivalent to a 15% requirement for total energy use from installing renewable energy.

If this policy is applied for all new developments but does not apply for small scale developments (in England this is defined as any development under 10 homes) then the council will still score the point.

When marking the Planning section we will assess a Regulation 19 draft local plan or the latest adopted Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document from the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 10a

Has the council identified suitable areas for new solar energy, wind developments and district heat networks?

Topic

Renewable Energy - Suitable Areas

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded if the council has a map detailing where solar energy can be built within the council's area.

Points awarded if the council has a map detailing where wind energy can be built within the council's area.

Points awarded if the council has a map detailing where a district heat network can be built within the council's area.

Clarifications

We will accept mapping that is included within the Local Plan or any area energy mapping that has been done by the council.

Planning & Land Use · Question 10b

Has the Council approved any planning applications for new or expanded solar or wind developments, battery storage, or renewable district heat networks since 2019?

Topic

Renewable Energy - Approved Applications

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Points awarded for planning applications approved for new or expanded solar, renewable district heat networks, wind developments or battery storage. A point will be awarded for each planning application, which has been approved up to a maximum of 5.

Solar developments must exceed 1 megawatt in capacity.

Clarifications

Marked using data compiled by Department for BEIS - https://data.barbour-abi.com/smart-map/repd/beis/?type=repd

Planning & Land Use · Question 11

Has the Council approved a planning application for a carbon intensive energy system to be built or expanded from 2019?

Topic

Carbon Intensive Industry

Question Weighting

nan

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Negatively Scored Question
Points deducted if the council has approved or expanded a carbon intensive energy system since 2019. A carbon energy intensive system includes coal mines, fracking/shale gas/gas drilling, oil drilling, and unabated fossil fuel generation.

-20% of the maximum possible section score will be deducted if the council has approved or expanded a carbon intensive energy system.

Clarifications

This question is scored using the data compiled by Drill or Drop database on the approval of oil, gas and coal projects.
https://drillordrop.com/planning/

This section will contribute 15% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 15% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 15% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 20% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

This section aims to understand to what extent climate action has been incorporated and embedded across the whole of the council in all its activities and services in its decision making, forward planning and structures. This section also looks at how councils are raising funds for climate action and whether the councils’ investments are sustainable or supporting high carbon infrastructure and industries.

Governance & Finance · Question 1a

Does the council's corporate plan include a net zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Net Zero Embedded in Corporate Plan

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if climate action (alternatively called sustainability or environment) is listed as one of the council's core priorities or equivalent. It must have its own heading or section and a net zero target date must be referenced.

The net zero target date must be an area-wide target, either the UK Government's national target, the devolved nation's target or the council's area-wide net zero target.

Clarifications

A corporate plan is a business planning document that sets out the council's future priorities and objectives to help ensure that the council manages its resources effectively.

For County Councils the document is called a (Strategic) Economic Plan

We will accept other language for target dates, such as carbon neutrality.

Governance & Finance · Question 1b

Does the council's medium term financial plan include the council's net zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Net-Zero Embedded in mid-term Financial Plan

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if climate action (alternatively called sustainability or environment) is listed as one of the council's core priorities or equivalent. It must have its own heading or section and a net zero target date must be referenced.

The net zero target date must be an area-wide target, either the UK Government's national target, the devolved nation's target or the council's area-wide net zero target.

Clarifications

A mid-term Financial Plan is a plan (often covering four years) which sets out the council's commitment to provide services that meet the needs of people locally and that represent value for money within the overall resources available to the council.

We will accept other language for target dates, such as carbon neutrality.

Governance & Finance · Question 2

Does the council's Corporate Risk Register accurately identify the risks of climate change to the local area?

Topic

Climate Change Risk Register

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the councils' Corporate or Strategic Risk Register references the impact of climate change to the local area.

There must be an explicit link between climate change and the increased risk of extreme weather events. The Risk Register must link to or reference mitigating actions (such as an adaptation strategy or other actions).

Clarifications

The Corporate or Strategic Risk Register must included identified risks and suggested actions on one or more of the following areas: changes in climate and extreme weather, planning & land use, transport, energy generation, biodiversity and food.

Flood risk management strategies are not valid as councils already have a statutory duty to produce stand alone flood risk management strategies.

Adaptation plans are not valid, unless they are linked from the Corporate or Strategic Risk Register.

Governance & Finance · Question 3a

Is the council reporting on its own greenhouse gas emissions?

Topic

Emission data reduction

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council is reporting its own emissions and fulfill all of the following:
- The council states whether they are using the Environmental Reporting Guidelines from Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), the GCoM Common Reporting Framework (CRF), the Greenhouse Gas Accounting Tool (from the LGA), the Greenhouse Gas Protocol for Cities (Community Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventories) to develop their inventory.
- The inventory must cover a continuous period of 12 months, either a calendar year or a financial year
- There must be data from at least two different years between or including 2019 and 2023
- The council must be measuring their own scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions

Clarifications

Scope 1 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation owns or controls directly, such as fuel burnt from council vehicles.
Scope 2 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation produces indirectly when they purchase and use energy, such as the emissions created from the electricity the council buys to heat its offices.
Scope 3 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that are created indirectly in an organisations' supply chain, such as the emissions produced in making the computers or paper that the council buys. Scope 3 also includes any other emissions not within scope 1 and 2.

Governance & Finance · Question 3b

According to the council's own reporting, have the council's own greenhouse gas emissions reduced since 2019?

Topic

Emission data reduction

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Four-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if, using the councils' own reporting mechanisms, there has been a reduction of scope 1 and 2 emissions when comparing 2019 to 2022 (or financial years 2018/19 to 2022/23) data equal to or greater than 5% and lower than 10%.

Second tier criteria met if the emissions reduction has been greater than or equal to 10% and lower than 20%,

Third-tier criteria met if the reduction has been greater than or equal to 20% and lower than 40%.

Fourth-tier criteria met if the emission reduction has been greater than or equal to 40%.

We recognise that there is currently no standard way that all councils use to report on emissions. We will score councils' own calculations, despite the differences, as long as they fulfill the requirements in 3a.

Clarifications

Exact emission figures must be published so we are able to calculate/verify the decrease. For example, a stand alone overall percentage decrease number or a graph where you can’t read the actual figures is not valid.

Scope 1 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation owns or controls directly, such as fuel burnt from council vehicles.

Scope 2 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation produces indirectly when they purchase and use energy, such as the emissions created from the electricity the council buys to heat its offices.

Governance & Finance · Question 4

Has the council's area wide carbon emissions decreased, according to UK Government data?

Topic

Emission data reduction

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Four-tier criteria
Criteria met if the council has had an emission reduction equal to or greater than 2% from 2019 to 2022.

Additional points awarded if the emission reduction is greater than or equal to 5% and lower than 10%, or further points if the reduction is greater than or equal to 10% or less than 20%. Further points awarded if the emission reduction is equal to or greater than 20%.

Clarifications

Marked using data provided by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. The data that will be used is the percentage difference between the calendar years 2022 and 2019 of the "Local Authority territorial carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions estimates within the scope of influence of Local Authorities" when it is published in Summer 2024.

Governance & Finance · Question 5

Has the council adopted a new governance or decision making process to put tackling the climate emergency at the heart of every council decision made?

Topic

Climate Change Decision Making

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if climate implications are listed or referenced for all council decisions at full council. Climate implications can be considered through Environmental Implications or an Integrated Impact Assessment if this includes a climate or environmental sub-heading or section.

Second tier criteria met if the council is using a detailed impact assessment tool to assess the climate implications of all council decisions.

Clarifications

nan

Governance & Finance · Question 6a

Does the council have a sustainable procurement policy that includes an area wide net zero target and makes tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Procurement

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has a stand alone environmental or sustainable procurement policy, or a complete section on Sustainable or Responsible Procurement, Climate Change or Action or something similar within their procurement policy that makes explicit reference to the council's Climate Action Plan and an area-wide net zero target date.

Clarifications

nan

Governance & Finance · Question 6b

6b. Does the councils' procurement policy require tenders to take action to reduce waste, carbon emissions or other environmental actions?

Topic

Procurement

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a mandatory requirement for tenders to do any of the following:
- Demonstrate how they will meet energy efficiency requirements or minimise energy consumption.
- Demonstrate how they will minimise waste in their products and services. This could be through recycled, natural, biodegradable or renewable materials being used, through not using single use plastic or other non-recyclable materials or through ensuring products and services last for as long as possible.

Second tier criteria met if the council's procurement policy includes any of the following:
- The council aims to source low or zero carbon energy wherever possible.
- The council aims to phase out the use of fossil fuels from their council fleet.
- The council references the waste hierarchy in its policy, for example by stating that it encourages the councils to consider if repeat procurement requests are always needed.

Clarifications

nan

Governance & Finance · Question 7

Does the council have a Cabinet member or Portfolio Holder that has climate change explicitly in their remit?

Topic

Elected Climate Change portfolio holder

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has a role such as Chair of Environment Committee, Cabinet Member for Environment, Chair of Environment and Climate Change Scrutiny Committee or any title with the words Climate Change, Climate Action, Climate Emergency, Environmental Sustainability, Environment or similar in it.
This role can be merged with another role, such as Environment and Transport.

Clarifications

Councils can be governed either by a cabinet or committee structure. A cabinet structure involves a council leader and cabinet members all from the same governing party or parties. A committee structure distributes power across politically balanced committees.

Having a Climate Champion listed as a responsibility for a councillor, as opposed to a formal role will not qualify for a mark. A Chair or Cabinet member for Environmental Services is also not valid.

Governance & Finance · Question 8

What percentage of the council's overall staff work on implementing their Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects?

Topic

Staff time on climate action

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
Criteria met if there are multiple staff members employed on 3 days a week or more to be working on the council's Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects equating to a given % of the overall council staff team.

First tier criteria met if more than or equal to 0.5% but less than 1% of council staff work on implementing a councils' Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects.

Second tier criteria met if more than or equal to 1% but less than 2% of council staff work on implementing a councils' Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects.

Third tier criteria met if more than or equal to 2% of council staff work on implementing a councils' Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects

Clarifications

Staff is defined as all directly employed council staff (excluding sub/contractors and agency staff). We accept contractors for the role of biodiversity planning officer as long as they are equivalent to 3 days or more per week.

Governance & Finance · Question 9

Have all senior management and councillors in the cabinet or committee chairs received climate awareness training?

Topic

Carbon Literacy/climate awareness training

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Criteria met if all senior management and councillors in leadership positions such as cabinet members or committee chairs elected before May 2024 have received climate awareness, Carbon Literacy or equivalent training.

Clarifications

Senior Management includes all Chief Executives, deputy Chief Executives and Directors or Heads of Departments, or equivalents, depending on what each council calls them.

Governance & Finance · Question 10a

Has the council raised ring-fenced income for climate action from property development?

Topic

Funding sources

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria is met if the council has used either the Community Infrastructure Levy or Section 106 to raise any amount of ring-fenced funds for climate action, explicitly to fund climate action projects, including mitigation, adaptation or ecological and biodiversity restoration or enhancement. The funds must be ring-fenced for climate or ecological projects, created with money from property development.

References to funds covering blue or green infrastructure projects, sustainable drainage, transport or other specific projects listed in an Infrastructure Funding Statement is not valid. A commitment to climate action in Infrastructure Funding Strategies is also not valid.

In Scotland, the criteria is met if the council has used section 75 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 for the same purposes as above.
In Northern Ireland, the criteria is met if the council has used section 76 of the 2011 Planning Act for the same purposes as above.

Clarifications

The Community Infrastructure Levy is a charge that local authorities can set on new development in order to raise funds to help fund specific projects, such as the infrastructure, facilities and services needed to support new homes and businesses.

Section 106 are legal agreements between Local Authorities and developers linked to planning permissions, which can include councils requiring developers to build specific community infrastructure (such as bus and cycles lanes) or provide finance for specific council projects. They can also be known as planning obligations.

Section 75 of the Town and Country Planning (Scotland) Act 1997 is similar to section 106, where the council can require conditions of the developers, such as building specific community infrastructure or providing finance for specific council projects.

Section 76 of the 2011 Planning Act is similar to section 106, where the council can require conditions of the developers, such as building specific community infrastructure or providing finance for specific council projects.

Governance & Finance · Question 10b

Has the council launched a Climate Bond, Community Municipal Investment or equivalent?

Topic

Funding sources

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has launched a Climate Bond, Community Municipal Investment or equivalent of any amount as a way to raise funds for climate action that the council is delivering.

Clarifications

A Climate Bond or Community Municipal Investment are bonds or loans issued by the council's corporate body and administered by a regulated crowdfunding platform. They allow local authorities to raise funds for specific projects through the public investing their money, from as little as £5, through a crowdfunding model.

Marked using data provided by the Green Finance Institute - https://www.greenfinanceinstitute.co.uk/programmes/ceeb/lcbs/

Governance & Finance · Question 10c

Has the council raised income for climate action from any other sources?

Topic

Funding sources

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria is met if the council has raised any amount of funds for climate action through any of the following:
- Energy Service Company
- Successful grants in relation to climate action (including active travel, bus or other public transport improvements, rewilding, waste reduction, or biodiversity and conservation projects)
- Joint Ventures/Special Purpose Vehicles
- Loans (including through Salix Finance or Public Works Loans Board)

Clarifications

Any government funding is valid except the Public Sector Decarbonisation Fund, Green Homes Grant and others similar to this. These are not valid for this as marks are awarded for this funding in Buildings & Heating questions.

A joint venture is a partnership between the council and a private company to provide a service or complete a project where both parties share the benefits and losses.

Governance & Finance · Question 11a

Has the council passed a motion in support of divestment from all fossil fuels from the councils' pension funds?

Topic

Divestment of Pension Funds

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has passed a motion supporting the commitment to divest the council's own assets or investments.

Second tier criteria met if the council has passed a motion supporting the divestment of the council's pension investments, which is an indicative vote in favour of divesting the corresponding pension fund.

Clarifications

Divestment is the opposite of investment, and consists of stocks, bonds or investment funds that are unethical, and in this case, invested in fossil fuel companies such as Shell, BP and Exxon.

Marked using data provided by UK Divest - https://www.divest.org.uk/council-motions/

Governance & Finance · Question 11b

Has the council's pensions fund committed to divesting from all fossil fuels?

Topic

Divestment of Pension Funds

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the pension fund has committed to partially divesting. For example, it has committed to divesting only from coal, tar sands or oil.

Second tier criteria met if the pension fund has committed to divest from all fossil fuels.

Clarifications

Divestment is the opposite of investment, and consists of stocks, bonds or investment funds that are unethical, and in this case, invested in fossil fuel companies such as Shell, BP and Exxon.

Where the council does not have control over its own pension investments, such as where the council pension fund is pooled between local authorities, we are looking for a commitment from the pooled pension fund.

Marked using data provided by UK Divest - https://www.divest.org.uk/commitments/

Governance & Finance · Question 12

Does the council have direct investments in airports or high carbon intensive energy industries?

Topic

Council Investments in High Carbon Industries

Question Weighting

nan

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Penalty Mark Question
Points deducted if the council has direct investments or shares, of any size, in airports or any carbon intensive industries.

-15% of the maximum possible section score will be deducted if the council has any direct investments.

Clarifications

High carbon intensive industries is defined as coal, oil or gas production (including shale gas or unconventional gas production).

This section will contribute 20% to a Combined Authority’s overall score

This section aims to understand to what extent climate action has been incorporated and embedded across the whole of the combined authority in all its activities and services in its decision making, forward planning and structures. This section also looks at how combined authorities are raising funds for climate action.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 1a

Does the combined authority corporate plan include a net zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Net Zero Embedded in Corporate Plan

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if climate action (alternatively called sustainability or environment) is listed as one of the council's core priorities or equivalent. It must have its own heading or section and a net zero target date must be referenced.

The net zero target date must be an area-wide target, either the UK Government's national target, the devolved nation's target or the council's area-wide net zero target.

Clarifications

A corporate plan is a business planning document that sets out the council's future priorities and objectives to help ensure that the council manages its resources effectively.

For County Councils the document is called a (Strategic) Economic Plan

We will accept other language for target dates, such as carbon neutrality.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 1b

Does the combined authority's medium term financial plan include the council's net zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Net-Zero Embedded in mid-term Financial Plan

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if climate action (alternatively called sustainability or environment) is listed as one of the council's core priorities or equivalent. It must have its own heading or section and a net zero target date must be referenced.

The net zero target date must be an area-wide target, either the UK Government's national target, the devolved nation's target or the council's area-wide net zero target.

Clarifications

A mid-term Financial Plan is a plan (often covering four years) which sets out the council's commitment to provide services that meet the needs of people locally and that represent value for money within the overall resources available to the council.

We will accept other language for target dates, such as carbon neutrality.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 2

Does the combined authority's Local Industrial Strategy include a net-zero target and make tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Local Industrial Strategy

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if climate action (alternatively called sustainability or environment) is listed as one of the combined authority's core priorities or equivalent. It must have its own heading or section and a net-zero target date must be referenced.

The net-zero target date must be an area-wide target, either the UK Government's national target, the devolved nation's target or the combined authority's area-wide net-zero target.

Clarifications

A Local Industrial Strategy is a strategy led by Mayoral Combined Authorities or Local Enterprise Partnerships which aims to promote the coordination of local economic policy and national funding streams and establish new ways of working between national and local government, and the public and private sectors.

All combined authorities will be marked on this question, whether they lead or are just part of the strategy.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 3

Does the combined authority's Corporate Risk Register accurately identify the risks of climate change to the local area?

Topic

Climate Change Risk Register

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the councils' Corporate or Strategic Risk Register references the impact of climate change to the local area.

There must be an explicit link between climate change and the increased risk of extreme weather events. The Risk Register must link to or reference mitigating actions (such as an adaptation strategy or other actions).

Clarifications

The Corporate or Strategic Risk Register must included identified risks and suggested actions on one or more of the following areas: changes in climate and extreme weather, planning & land use, transport, energy generation, biodiversity and food.

Flood risk management strategies are not valid as councils already have a statutory duty to produce stand alone flood risk management strategies.

Adaptation plans are not valid, unless they are linked from the Corporate or Strategic Risk Register.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 4a

Is the combined authority reporting on its own greenhouse gas emissions?

Topic

Emission data reduction

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council is reporting its own emissions and fulfill all of the following:
- The council states whether they are using the Environmental Reporting Guidelines from Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), the GCoM Common Reporting Framework (CRF), the Greenhouse Gas Accounting Tool (from the LGA), the Greenhouse Gas Protocol for Cities (Community Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventories) to develop their inventory.
- The inventory must cover a continuous period of 12 months, either a calendar year or a financial year
- There must be data from at least two different years between or including 2019 and 2023
- The council must be measuring their own scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions

Clarifications

Scope 1 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation owns or controls directly, such as fuel burnt from council vehicles.
Scope 2 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation produces indirectly when they purchase and use energy, such as the emissions created from the electricity the council buys to heat its offices.
Scope 3 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that are created indirectly in an organisations' supply chain, such as the emissions produced in making the computers or paper that the council buys. Scope 3 also includes any other emissions not within scope 1 and 2.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 4b

According to the combined authority's own reporting, have the council's own greenhouse gas emissions reduced since 2019?

Topic

Emission data reduction

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Four-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if, using the councils' own reporting mechanisms, there has been a reduction of scope 1 and 2 emissions when comparing 2019 to 2022 (or financial years 2018/19 to 2022/23) data equal to or greater than 5% and lower than 10%.

Second tier criteria met if the emissions reduction has been greater than or equal to 10% and lower than 20%,

Third-tier criteria met if the reduction has been greater than or equal to 20% and lower than 40%.

Fourth-tier criteria met if the emission reduction has been greater than or equal to 40%.

We recognise that there is currently no standard way that all councils use to report on emissions. We will score councils' own calculations, despite the differences, as long as they fulfill the requirements in 3a.

Clarifications

Exact emission figures must be published so we are able to calculate/verify the decrease. For example, a stand alone overall percentage decrease number or a graph where you can’t read the actual figures is not valid.

Scope 1 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation owns or controls directly, such as fuel burnt from council vehicles.

Scope 2 emissions are greenhouse gas emissions that an organisation produces indirectly when they purchase and use energy, such as the emissions created from the electricity the council buys to heat its offices.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 5

Has the combined authority's area wide carbon emissions decreased, according to UK Government data?

Topic

Emission data reduction

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Four-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has had an emission reduction equal to or greater than 2% from 2019 to 2022.

Second tier criteria met if the emissions reduction has been greater than or equal to 5% and lower than 10%,

Third-tier criteria met if the reduction has been greater than or equal to 10% and lower than 20%.

Fourth-tier criteria met if the emission reduction has been greater than or equal to 20%.

Clarifications

Marked using data provided by the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero and the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. The data that will be used is the percentage difference between the calendar years 2022 and 2019 of the "Local Authority territorial carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions estimates within the scope of influence of Local Authorities" when it is published in Summer 2024.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 6

Has the combined authority adopted a new governance or decision making process to put tackling the climate emergency at the heart of every council decision made?

Topic

Climate Change Decision Making

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if climate implications are listed or referenced for all council decisions at full council. Climate implications can be considered through Environmental Implications or an Integrated Impact Assessment if this includes a climate or environmental sub-heading or section.

Second tier criteria met if the council is using a detailed impact assessment tool to assess the climate implications of all council decisions.

Clarifications

nan

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 7a

Does the combined authority have a sustainable procurement policy that includes an area wide net zero target and makes tackling the climate emergency one of its main priorities?

Topic

Procurement

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has a stand alone environmental or sustainable procurement policy, or a complete section on Sustainable or Responsible Procurement, Climate Change or Action or something similar within their procurement policy that makes explicit reference to the council's Climate Action Plan and an area-wide net zero target date.

Clarifications

nan

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 7b

Does the combined authority's procurement policy require tenders to take action to reduce waste, carbon emissions or other environmental actions?

Topic

Procurement

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a mandatory requirement for tenders to do any of the following:
- Demonstrate how they will meet energy efficiency requirements or minimise energy consumption.
- Demonstrate how they will minimise waste in their products and services. This could be through recycled, natural, biodegradable or renewable materials being used, through not using single use plastic or other non-recyclable materials or through ensuring products and services last for as long as possible.

Second tier criteria met if the council's procurement policy includes any of the following:
- The council aims to source low or zero carbon energy wherever possible.
- The council aims to phase out the use of fossil fuels from their council fleet.
- The council references the waste hierarchy in its policy, for example by stating that it encourages the councils to consider if repeat procurement requests are always needed.

Clarifications

nan

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 8

Does the combined authority have a Cabinet member or Portfolio Holder that has climate change explicitly in their remit?

Topic

Elected Climate Change portfolio holder

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has a role such as Chair of Environment Committee, Cabinet Member for Environment, Chair of Environment and Climate Change Scrutiny Committee or any title with the words Climate Change, Climate Action, Climate Emergency, Environmental Sustainability, Environment or similar in it.
This role can be merged with another role, such as Environment and Transport.

Clarifications

Councils can be governed either by a cabinet or committee structure. A cabinet structure involves a council leader and cabinet members all from the same governing party or parties. A committee structure distributes power across politically balanced committees.

Having a Climate Champion listed as a responsibility for a councillor, as opposed to a formal role will not qualify for a mark. A Chair or Cabinet member for Environmental Services is also not valid.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 9

What percentage of the combined authority's overall staff work on implementing their Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects?

Topic

Staff time on climate action

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
Criteria met if there are multiple staff members employed on 3 days a week or more to be working on the council's Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects equating to a given % of the overall council staff team.

First tier criteria met if more than or equal to 0.5% but less than 1% of council staff work on implementing a councils' Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects.

Second tier criteria met if more than or equal to 1% but less than 2% of council staff work on implementing a councils' Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects.

Third tier criteria met if more than or equal to 2% of council staff work on implementing a councils' Climate Action Plan or other climate change projects

Clarifications

Staff is defined as all directly employed council staff (excluding sub/contractors and agency staff). We accept contractors for the role of biodiversity planning officer as long as they are equivalent to 3 days or more per week.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 10

Have all senior management received climate awareness training?

Topic

Carbon Literacy/climate awareness training

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Criteria met if all senior management have received climate awareness, Carbon Literacy or equivalent training.

Clarifications

Senior Management includes all Chief Executives, deputy Chief Executives and Directors or Heads of Departments, or equivalents, depending on what each council calls them.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 11

Does the combined authority have an environmental investment fund that small and medium-sized enterprises and/or the public sector can use?

Topic

Funding sources

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Point awarded if the combined authority has established a community climate action fund by attracting external investment or similar, provided the following criteria are met:
- The fund is at least £100k or higher
- The financing of the fund has come from attracting external investment
The fund is accessible to small and medium-sized enterprises and/or the public sector
- More general community or environment funds will be awarded if they specify that climate change projects will be supported.

To account for funding released in stages, the point will be awarded if the funding or support has been offered since 1st January 2022.

Clarifications

This is a ring-fenced fund that a combined authority has created by attracting external investment to spend on climate action locally, either in partnership with a local council, or directly by other public sector bodies.
A fund created only with existing combined authority funds or only from government funding is not valid for a point.

The criteria must clearly be about environmental action projects and those who apply must complete some sort of application to define their planned climate action activities.

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 12a

Has the combined authority passed a motion in support of divestment from all fossil fuels from the councils' pension funds?

Topic

Divestment of Pension Funds

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has passed a motion supporting the commitment to divest the council's own assets or investments.

Second tier criteria met if the council has passed a motion supporting the divestment of the council's pension investments, which is an indicative vote in favour of divesting the corresponding pension fund.

Clarifications

Divestment is the opposite of investment, and consists of stocks, bonds or investment funds that are unethical, and in this case, invested in fossil fuel companies such as Shell, BP and Exxon.

Marked using data provided by UK Divest - https://www.divest.org.uk/council-motions/

Governance & Finance (CA) · Question 12b

Has the combined authority's pensions fund committed to divesting from all fossil fuels?

Topic

Divestment of Pension Funds

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the pension fund has committed to partially divesting. For example, it has committed to divesting only from coal, tar sands or oil.

Second tier criteria met if the pension fund has committed to divest from all fossil fuels.

Clarifications

Divestment is the opposite of investment, and consists of stocks, bonds or investment funds that are unethical, and in this case, invested in fossil fuel companies such as Shell, BP and Exxon.

Where the council does not have control over its own pension investments, such as where the council pension fund is pooled between local authorities, we are looking for a commitment from the pooled pension fund.

Marked using data provided by UK Divest - https://www.divest.org.uk/commitments/

This section will contribute 10% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

The climate emergency is deeply connected to the ecological emergency. This section looks at what councils can do to protect and increase biodiversity in the area through their direct actions, the management of their green spaces, and biodiversity net gain requirements for developers.

Biodiversity · Question 1

Does the council use peat-free compost or soil in all landscaping and horticulture?

Topic

Peat-Free

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has stopped using peat in soils in all landscaping and horticulture, such as parks and council properties. A statement that the council has stopped using peat compost or soil on their website or biodiversity strategy will be sufficient to meet the criteria.

Clarifications

nan

Biodiversity · Question 2

Has the council banned the use of pesticides on all council owned and managed land?

Topic

Pesticides

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Criteria met if a council has banned the use of glyphosate or all pesticides in parks and road verges where they have control. This ban must include the street cleaning/weed control team.

Clarifications

Banning pesticides includes banning glyphosate and any other pesticides that the council have been using.

Marked using data supplied by Pesticide Action Network - https://www.pan-uk.org/pesticide-free-towns-success-stories/

Biodiversity · Question 3

Has the council stated they are mowing their green spaces less for wildlife?

Topic

Mowing

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has stated they are mowing their green spaces, including parks and road verges less regularly, or if the council has stated they are creating wildflower habitats within green spaces the local authorities manage.

Clarifications

nan

Biodiversity · Question 4

Are two thirds of the local wildlife sites in the council's area in positive conservation management?

Topic

Wildlife Sites

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Criteria met if 66% or more of local wildlife sites in the council's area are in positive conservation management.

Only English councils will be assessed on this question, as there is no data available to mark Northern Ireland, Scotland or Wales.

Biodiversity · Question 5

Does the council have a target to increase tree cover and is a tree management plan agreed as they grow?

Topic

Tree Cover

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has a target to increase tree cover which has been included in the Biodiversity Action Plan and/or Tree Strategy, provided the council has agreed a tree management plan that details how new trees will be irrigated and cared for.

Clarifications

nan

Biodiversity · Question 6

Does the council turn off or dim their street light network to reduce light pollution?

Topic

Light Pollution

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if any area of the local authority that has been deemed safe to do so has dimmed street lighting or part night lighting.

Clarifications

Part night lighting is where councils switch off street lights for part of the night in certain areas. Typically areas with increased risk, such as in the vicinity of pedestrian crossings or with higher nighttime use, will be exempted for safety reasons.

Dimming street lighting is where a council will dim street lights for some or all of the night in certain areas, with similar safety exemptions typically in place. LED lights are brighter for the same energy use so have a higher impact on insect populations unless dimmed. Smart dimming street lights, which are dimmer as standard but increase brightness when motion or sound is detected will also be included.

Biodiversity · Question 7

Have the council's parks been awarded Green Flag status?

Topic

Green Flag Awards

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if there is one Green Flag park but less than 4.

Second tier criteria if there are 4 or more Green Flag parks.

Clarifications

Marked using data provided by Green Flags UK - https://www.greenflagaward.org/award-winners/

It must be clear the council manages or supports the management of the park for the points to be awarded.

Biodiversity · Question 8

Does the council employ a planning ecologist to scrutinise planning reports for improvements to biodiversity in new developments, such as biodiversity net gain?

Topic

Planning Ecologists

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Criteria met if the council employs a planning ecologist on 3 days or more per week (0.6 FTE).

Clarifications

Planning ecologists are ecologists that scrutinise planning applications on biodiversity measures. They often sit within the planning department but they can sit within any department in the council. If the planning ecologist does sit outside the planning department it must be clear that the planning ecologist spends 3 days or more per week (0.6 FTE) scrutinising planning applications.

Contracted planning ecologists and permanent planning ecologists will both meet the criteria provided the threshold of 3 or more days a week is met.

Where councils have a joint approach, staff are shared across councils or in a joint planning unit, this will be accepted as long as the planning ecologist capacity meets the minimum criteria of staff (0.6 FTE) that is shared across the constituent councils. For example, if a joint planning unit had 6 FTE planning ecologists across 10 councils this would meet the criteria.

Biodiversity · Question 9

Does the council require a higher biodiversity net gain commitment from new developments?

Topic

Biodiversity Net-Gain

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if any policy within the Local Plan states that the council is asking for biodiversity net gain above the minimum 10% required by the UK Government.

Clarifications

nan

Biodiversity · Question 10

Has the council introduced a Green Space Factor to increase habitat in new developments?

Topic

Green Space Factor

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the local authority has introduced a Green Space Factor (or Urban Greening Factor) in their planning policies.

Clarifications

For more information on the Green Spaces Factor please read Natural England's guidance here: https://designatedsites.naturalengland.org.uk/GreenInfrastructure/GIStandards.aspx

If the Green Space Factor is only applied to major developments or to a specific area of the local authority then it would still be awarded the points.

However, it must be a policy that the local authority has adopted in the Local Plan or Supplementary Planning Document rather than only included in a specific Neighbourhood Plan.

This section will contribute 20% to a Combined Authority’s overall score

This section addresses how combined authorities can collaborate with others to improve their own climate action and to support others in the area to decarbonise. More than half of the emissions cuts needed to reach net zero rely on people and businesses taking up low-carbon solutions, and combined authorities can work with those in their local area to enable those solutions.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 1a

Has the combined authority published a climate action plan with SMART targets?

Topic

Climate Action Plan SMART targets

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has published a climate action plan that covers the area and includes references to SMART targets since September 2015.

Clarifications

This question will be marked using the criteria for Q3.12.1 of the Climate Action Plan Scorecards.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 1b

Has the combined authority published an up to date and easy-to-read annual report on their Climate Action Plan?

Topic

Published Annual report

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded for each of the following criteria:
- The combined authority has published an annual report since 1st January 2023
- The annual report is easy-to-read
- The annual report includes reporting on progress towards the council's Climate Action Plan SMART targets.

Clarifications

We have chosen the date 1st of January 2023 to ensure that the report is being issued on a yearly basis, while allowing for some delays.

"Easy to read" will be defined as clearly meant for public reading, and may include features such as a contents page, an executive summary, definitions for acronyms or complex language, simple English wherever possible, and graphics or tables to aid comprehension and navigation.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 2

Has the combined authority commissioned, written and published a study of available decarbonisation pathways for their area?

Topic

Decarbonisation pathways

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has commissioned, written and published a study of different decarbonisation pathways and scenarios to reach net zero carbon across the region by the local area-wide target.

Clarifications

Decarbonisation pathways are modelled projected scenarios of policy, technology & behaviour change over time to reach net zero carbon emissions. They are a science-based approach to climate policymaking. The CCC's Sixth Carbon Budget report includes a national example. These pathways are most effective when a specific pathway is chosen and implemented.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 3a

Has the combined authority lobbied the government for more funding, powers and climate resources?

Topic

Lobbying government

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has sent a letter or had a meeting with national or devolved governments calling for the government to take further action, or asking for councils and combined authorities to receive more funding, powers and climate resources to take climate action since 1st January 2023.

Clarifications

The criteria will be met if combined authorities have worked on specific, climate-related issues, provided climate is cited as a reason to take action. For example, asking for measures to improve local bus provision will meet the criteria if reducing carbon emissions is cited as a reason to do so.

We have chosen the date 1st of January 2023 to ensure that any lobbying has been recent and continued, rather than once every few years.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 3b

Has the combined authority or its mayor publicly called for more climate action from the Government or other organisations?

Topic

Lobbying government

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met for signing or supporting at least 2 open letters or public statements, including those led by other combined authorities or organisations since 1st January 2023.

Second tier criteria met if the combined authority or its mayor has led at least one open letter or public statement since 1st January 2023.

Clarifications

We will consider combined authority website announcements and press releases as well as local or national news coverage when marking this question. The same open letter or public statement receiving coverage in several news sites will only be counted once.

We have chosen the date 1st of January 2023 to ensure that any lobbying has been recent and continued, rather than once every few years.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 4

Is the combined authority working with external partners or other councils to lobby national government for climate action, or to learn about and share best practice council climate action?

Topic

Sharing best practice

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council is a member of any one of the following organisations or has contributed to one case study of the following organisations.

Second tier criteria met if the council:
- is a member of 3 or more of the following organisations
- has contributed to case studies with 3 of more of the following organisations.
- any combination of the above.

Membership organisations:
- UK100 (Including the Countryside Climate Network)
- ADEPT
- Blueprint Coalition
- ICLEI
- Carbon Neutral Cities
- UK Green Building Council
- Sustainable Scotland Network
- Carbon Disclosure Project (including submitting to the CDP since 2019)

Case studies:
- Friends of the Earth & Ashden case studies
- LGA (Local Government Association) climate change case studies
- UK100 case studies
- WRAP case studies

Clarifications

Further networks or case studies may be added on a case basis if a comparable standard of quality is met.

Working with climate consultants, while important, will not be scored as part of this question.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 5a

Does the combined authority have an on-going way for residents to influence the implementation of the combined authority's Climate Action Plan?

Topic

Ongoing resident engagement

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has established a way for residents to influence the implementation of the council's climate action. This may be through:
- a community engagement group
- introducing community, resident or activist representation on a council climate change committee/group
- convening or using a local climate action network to improve the implementation of their climate action plan
- broader forms of community engagement work such as a series of workshops across the area for different groups of residents.

Second tier criteria met if there is an overarching framework such as a dedicated climate public engagement plan to inform this work.

Clarifications

The way that councils engage with residents can include time bound engagement work such as climate assemblies provided they have been held since 1st January 2023. This is to ensure that the work is ongoing.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 5b

Does the combined authority's ongoing engagement with residents include those most affected by climate change and the transition?

Topic

Representative ongoing engagement

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the combined authority's ongoing engagement (under 5a) specifically aims to engage those most affected by climate change and climate action policies.

Second tier criteria met if the combined authority's climate action plan has undergone an equalities impact assessment to identify who is most affected by climate change and climate action policies.

Clarifications

Who is most affected by climate change and climate action policies depends on the local context. Therefore, this could include any community or group of people provided the combined authority has specified they are more affected. For example, this may include people who live near rivers with increasing risk of flooding, or people with physical disabilities who can be affected by policies to reduce traffic and increase active travel such as clean air zones.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 6

Has the combined authority supported a research project into climate action in their region?

Topic

Research

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has funded or commissioned area-wide research to increase understanding of the local challenge and support constituent councils.

Clarifications

Research projects may include area-wide opinion polling on behaviour change and climate interventions, research on nature-based flood mitigation opportunities, or any similar research to inform local climate policymaking.

Research on retrofitting will not be included in this question as it is marked in Buildings & Heating & Green Skills Q4

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 7

Has the combined authority created a climate change commission or similar?

Topic

Climate change commission

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has created a climate commission or other similar body, to bring together experts and stakeholders, provide independent advice and guide climate policy in the area.

Clarifications

nan

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 8

Is the combined authority working in partnership with local businesses to encourage decarbonisation?

Topic

Partnerships - Businesses

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the combined authority has 3 or more schemes to provide free support or free tailored advice to businesses in the local area to decarbonise, including through collaborative measures with local businesses, other local authorities, or via the Local Enterprise Partnership.

One single overarching scheme with three different approaches to support local businesses will also be awarded the point.

Clarifications

Examples of support for businesses to decarbonise include free environmental audits for businesses, free training such as carbon literacy training, or grants to support businesses to decarbonise their properties.

This question excludes green skills-specific schemes, which are covered in the Buildings & Heating & Skills section

This question will include schemes that have been available at some point since 1st January 2023, in order to include funds released in waves that may not be open at the time of marking.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 9

Has the combined authority committed to ban high carbon advertising & sponsorship?

Topic

Communications - advertising

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

A point will be awarded if the combined authority has made a commitment to ban high carbon advertising on ad sites it controls by introducing a low carbon advertising and sponsorship policy or similar.

Clarifications

High carbon advertising includes advertisements for products and activities that emit high amounts of CO2 emissions such as fossil fuels and fossil fuel companies, diesel, petrol and hybrid car engines and air travel.

Ad sites that the combined authority may control includes bus stops and other transport sites.

Collaboration & Engagement (CA) · Question 10

Does the local authority have an ongoing way for employee representative bodies (including recognised trade unions) to influence the development and delivery of the council’s Climate Action Plan?

Topic

Employee representation (new)

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

FOI

Criteria

We will be publishing the criteria for this question shortly.

Clarifications

nan

This section will contribute 10% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

This section addresses how councils can collaborate with others to improve their own climate action and to support others in the area to decarbonise. More than half of the emissions cuts needed to reach net zero rely on people and businesses taking up low-carbon solutions, and councils can work with those in their local area to enable those solutions.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 1

Do the council's climate pages include information about behaviour changes that residents can make, and are they easy to find?

Topic

Council website - information for residents

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council website has climate pages that are easy for residents to find and include information about what residents can do to reduce their carbon emissions.

Information about what residents can do must include links to council initiatives for further support. For example, a suggestion to reduce food waste could include a link to order a food waste caddy.

Clarifications

"Easy to find" will be defined as meeting any of the following criteria:
- Within 3 clicks of the homepage
- Searchable on the site search bar using any of the phrases 'climate change', 'climate emergency', 'climate action' or 'environment'
- There is an environment and/or climate section in the drop down menu

Links for further support can include links to collaborative initiatives with other councils.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 2a

Has the council published a Climate Action Plan with SMART targets?

Topic

Climate Action Plan

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has published a climate action plan that covers the area and includes references to SMART targets since September 2015.

Clarifications

This question will be marked using the criteria for Q3.12.1 of the Climate Action Plan Scorecards.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 2b

Has the council published an up to date and easy-to-read annual report on their Climate Action Plan?

Topic

Published Annual report

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Points awarded for each of the following criteria:
- The council has published an annual report since 1st January 2023
- The annual report is easy to read
- The annual report includes reporting on progress towards the council's climate action plan SMART targets.

Clarifications

We have chosen the date 1st of January 2023 to ensure that the report is being issued on a yearly basis, while allowing for some delays.

"Easy to read" will be defined as clearly meant for public reading, and may include features such as a contents page, an executive summary, definitions for acronyms or complex language, simple English wherever possible, and graphics or tables to aid comprehension and navigation.

Scottish councils are obliged to publish statutory annual reports which will meet the criteria for an annual report, but they must release a more easy-to-read version with reference to SMART targets for further points.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 3

Has the council lobbied the government for climate action?

Topic

Councils lobbying government

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has sent a letter or had a meeting with national or devolved governments calling for the government to take further action, or asking for councils to receive more funding, powers and climate resources to take climate action since 1st January 2023.

The criteria will be met if councils have worked on specific, climate-related issues, provided climate is cited as a reason to take action. For example, asking for measures to improve local bus provision will meet the criteria if reducing carbon emissions is cited as a reason to do so.

Clarifications

We have chosen the date 1st of January 2023 to ensure that any lobbying has been recent and continued, rather than once every few years.

The criteria will be met if councils have worked on specific, climate-related issues, provided climate is cited as a reason to take action. For example, asking for measures to improve local bus provision will meet the criteria if reducing carbon emissions is cited as a reason to do so.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 4

Is the council working with external partners or other councils to seek to influence national governments on climate action, or to learn about and share best practice on council climate action?

Topic

Sharing Best practice between Councils

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council is a member of any one of the following organisations or has contributed to one case study of the following organisations.

Second tier criteria met if the council:
- is a member of 3 or more of the following organisations
- has contributed to case studies with 3 of more of the following organisations.
- any combination of the above.

Membership organisations:
- UK100 (Including the Countryside Climate Network)
- ADEPT
- Blueprint Coalition
- ICLEI
- Carbon Neutral Cities
- UK Green Building Council
- Sustainable Scotland Network
- Carbon Disclosure Project (including submitting to the CDP since 2019)

Case studies:
- Friends of the Earth & Ashden case studies
- LGA (Local Government Association) climate change case studies
- UK100 case studies
- WRAP case studies

Clarifications

Further networks or case studies may be added on a case basis if a comparable standard of quality is met.

Working with climate consultants, while important, will not be scored as part of this question.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 5a

Does the council have an ongoing way for residents to influence the implementation of the council's Climate Action Plan?

Topic

Residents engagement

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has established a way for residents to influence the implementation of the council's climate action. This may be through:
- a community engagement group
- introducing community, resident or activist representation on a council climate change committee/group
- convening or using a local climate action network to improve the implementation of their climate action plan
- broader forms of community engagement work such as a series of workshops across the area for different groups of residents.

Second tier criteria met if there is an overarching framework such as a dedicated climate public engagement plan to inform this work.

Clarifications

The way that councils engage with residents can include time bound engagement work such as climate assemblies provided they have been held since 1st January 2023. This is to ensure that the work is ongoing.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 5b

Does the council's ongoing engagement with residents include those most affected by climate change and climate action policy?

Topic

Representative residents engagement

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council's ongoing engagement (under 5a) specifically aims to engage those most affected by climate change and climate action policies.

Second tier criteria met if the council's climate action plan has undergone an equalities impact assessment to identify who is most affected by climate change and climate action policies.

Clarifications

Who is most affected by climate change and climate action policies depends on the local context. Therefore, this could include any community or group of people provided the council has specified they are more affected. For example, this may include people who live near rivers with increasing risk of flooding, or people with physical disabilities who can be affected by policies to reduce traffic and increase active travel such as clean air zones.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 6

Does the council provide funding for community climate action, for example through an environment fund or climate action fund?

Topic

Funding for community climate action

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met for a ring-fenced fund that a council has created to spend on climate action locally, either in partnership with the council or for other organisations or volunteer and community groups. The fund must fulfill the following criteria:
- The fund is at least £10k in size. Where the overall amount of funding has not been stated, it will be assumed that funds awarding individual grants over £1k in size have a total fund of at least £10k.
- The fund is accessible to community groups, including, where relevant, parish councils.
- The funding has been open to applications at some point since 1st January 2023, in order to include funds released in waves that may not be open at the time of marking.

Clarifications

More general community or environment funds will be included if they specify that climate change and biodiversity/ecological projects will be supported.

This can be a pooled fund between multiple councils.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 7

Is the council working in partnership with health services on active travel, home insulation, air pollution, green spaces or other climate action policies?

Topic

Health Services Partnership

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has embedded health services into their climate change work or if they have embedded climate change into their health partnership work. This includes embedding climate impacts into the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA).

Clarifications

For example, the criteria might be met by including climate experts such as scientists, policy makers and representatives from environmental NGOs on Health and Wellbeing boards and regularly including climate change on the agenda.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 8

Is the council working in partnership with cultural institutions and organisations to encourage decarbonisation within culture and arts locally?

Topic

Partnerships - Culture

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if there is a partnership between the council and local sports, arts and cultural partnerships, provided the partnership includes any one of the following: funding for climate work, evidence of co-creation with community groups, the decarbonisation of cultural buildings including targets, initiatives that encourage behaviour change such as sustainable travel incentives, or a focus on climate justice.

Clarifications

nan

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 9

Is the council working in partnership with schools or other education settings to deliver climate action that young people can engage with?

Topic

Partnerships - young people

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council supports schools or other education settings by running any of the following schemes in more than one school:
- EnergySparks or equivalent auditing schemes which require local authority support.
- Solar Schools or other visible low-carbon interventions.
- Democratic engagement work in schools or other education settings to connect young people to climate decision making, including establishing youth climate panels or parliaments and holding youth climate summits for schools in the area.

Clarifications

This can include initiatives with other councils including county and district partnerships, provided that the council signposts this work from their website.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 10

Is the council working in partnership with local businesses to encourage decarbonisation?

Topic

Partnerships - Businesses

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council provides support or free tailored advice to businesses in the local area to decarbonise, including through collaborative measures with local businesses, other local authorities, or via the Local Enterprise Partnership.

Clarifications

Examples of support for businesses to decarbonise include funding environmental audits for businesses, free training such as carbon literacy training, or grants to support businesses to decarbonise their properties.

This can include initiatives with other councils including county and district partnerships, provided that the council signposts this work from their website. This question will include schemes that have been available at some point since 1st January 2023, in order to include funds released in waves that may not be open at the time of marking.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 11

Has the council passed a motion to ban high carbon advertising and sponsorship?

Topic

Communications - advertising

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has passed a motion to ban high carbon advertising on ad sites it controls by introducing a low carbon advertising and sponsorship policy or similar, or updated their existing advertising and sponsorship policies to include high carbon products.

Clarifications

High carbon advertising includes advertisements for products and activities that emit high amounts of CO2 emissions such as fossil fuels and fossil fuel companies, diesel, petrol and hybrid car engines and air travel.

Collaboration & Engagement · Question 12

Does the council have an ongoing way for employee representative bodies (including recognised trade unions) to influence the development and delivery of the council’s Climate Action Plan?

Topic

Employee representation (new)

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

We will be publishing the criteria for this new question shortly.

Clarifications

nan

This section will contribute 10% to a single tier council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a district council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a county council’s overall score
This section will contribute 10% to a Northern Irish council’s overall score

This section looks at the influencing role councils can play in supporting sustainable food production on their land and in their schools, and circular economy initiatives locally. Councils also have an important role to play in waste and recycling locally and improving this.

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 1a

Has the council reduced single use plastic in its buildings and events?

This question has been removed due to changes in UK law making it a legal requirement to ban the use and sale of some single use plastic

Topic

Single Use Plastic

Question Weighting

nan

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

This question has been removed due to changes in UK law making it a legal requirement to ban the use and sale of some single use plastic

Clarifications

nan

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 1b

Has the council encouraged the reduction of single use plastic at external events on council land, property or public spaces such as roads and parks?

Topic

Single Use Plastic

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council requires event organisers to provide additional information about their environmental commitments that make reference to minimising single use plastic use or how they will be using items that will be recyclable, compostable or reusable (such as a cup refill scheme).

Clarifications

nan

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 2

Has the council taken steps to support a circular economy locally?

Topic

Circular Economy

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has done any one of the following:
- Provided funding or space provided for a repair cafe or similar
- Provided funding or space for exchange or reuse shops or similar at household recycling centres or elsewhere
- Signed up as part of circular economy project

Clarifications

A circular economy is a model of production and consumption, which involves sharing, leasing, reusing, repairing, refurbishing and recycling existing materials and products as long as possible.

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 3

Does the council support initiatives to redistribute surplus food?

Topic

Surplus Food

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council supports an organisation that redistributes surplus food within the area through funding, staff or other ways (such as being listed as a partner of the project).

Clarifications

Surplus food is food that can no longer be sold or used in shops or restaurants even though it is still good to eat. Without redistributing this food, that often comes from supermarkets, restaurants or other businesses, it would go to waste or in landfill.

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 4a

Does the council have a sustainable food strategy?

Topic

Food Strategy

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the strategy or work plan covers the whole council area (sometimes called place-based) and includes sections on sustainable food or the climate impacts of food.
The strategy must cover 6 months or more.

Clarifications

The strategy is not valid for a mark if it only focuses on council only operations, or only focuses on healthy eating and obesity.

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 4b

Is the council part of a sustainable food partnership?

Topic

Food Partnership

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council is listed on the Sustainable Food Places membership list, or, if there is evidence that the council is part of a sustainable food partnership that fulfills the same criteria as Sustainable Food Places membership. The council can either lead the partnership or be a key member, such as on the steering group.

Clarifications

Marked using Sustainable Food Places membership list: https://www.sustainablefoodplaces.org/members/

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 5

Has the council taken steps to support local food growing?

Topic

Local Food Growing

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council has proactively created more space for local food growing through providing funding, land, staff or other resources to support:
- community orchards
- schools to have growing spaces
- community or city farms or gardens, including edible fruit/veg/herbs patches in public spaces such as parks, rooftops or grass verges.

Clarifications

Allotment space is not included in this question as it is a statutory requirement for councils to provide allotments.

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 6

Do schools in the council area serve less meat in school meals?

Topic

School Catering

Question Weighting

High

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if there is one completely vegetarian day each week on the school menu found on the councils' website or councils' principal school catering provider website.

Clarifications

School meals provided by the councils' in-house catering service or the primary contracted caterers that the council use are assessed in this question. These caterers may not cover all schools in the area, but most likely cover the majority of schools the councils' caterers provide for.
Schools includes primary, junior or secondary schools that are state-run schools.
Schools excludes private schools or academies.

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 7

Does the council provide weekly kerbside food waste recycling?

Topic

Kerbside Food Waste Recycling

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

Volunteer Research

Criteria

Criteria met if the council provides weekly kerbside food waste recycling to most homes in principal towns/urban areas.

Clarifications

nan

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 8

How high is the councils' area wide annual recycling rate?

Topic

Recycling Rate

Question Weighting

Low

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Three-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the council has a recycling rate equal to or greater than 50% and less than 60%.

Second tier criteria met awarded if the council has a recycling rate equal to or greater than 60% and less than 70%

Third tier criteria met if the council has a recycling rate equal to or greater than 70%.

Clarifications

Marked using data provided by DEFRA, Stats Wales, SEPA and DAERA-NI

Waste Reduction & Food · Question 9

How low is the councils' area wide level of household waste produced?

Topic

Household Waste Amount

Question Weighting

Medium

How will this be marked?

National Data

Criteria

Two-tier criteria
First tier criteria met if the annual residual waste in kg per household in the area is equal to or less than 400kg and more than 300kg per household.

Second tier criteria met if the annual residual waste in kg per household in the area is equal to or less than 300kg per household.

This question is scoring councils on the amount of residual waste (kg) per household in each council area.

Clarifications

Residual waste includes waste sent to landfill and incineration. It excludes waste that is recycled or composted.

Marked using data provided by DEFRA, Stats Wales and SEPA

Date range of evidence

Most questions marked by volunteers ask for evidence of climate action from 1st January 2020 up until October 2024. This is a similar date range we had to look for evidence for the 2023 Action Scorecards. The main difference is the change in date for evidence. This time around we are looking from the 1st January 2020, rather than looking for evidence from 1st January 2019 to March 2023. Strategies and policies that we mark must also be in date and active (except for Local Plans where Reg 19 drafts are accepted).

Some questions ask about the current situation of a council, and therefore the date of the work is cumulative or not time specific. For example, we mark councils on how many school streets they currently have, at the time of the first mark. Therefore, it doesn’t matter if the first school streets were introduced in 2010, 2017 or 2023, as long as they are currently all in use.

Some questions ask about evidence within a particular date range. For example, we mark councils on whether they have produced an annual Climate Action Plan Update since 1st January 2023 (note the update date for the 2025 methodology). This is a specific date range as this is needed to ensure that councils are publishing annual updates regularly, rather than one annual update in 2022 and nothing since.

For questions that use national data we will take the most recent data up until Spring 2025. And for questions that use FOI requests, unless otherwise stated in the FOIs, we are marking council climate action from 1st January 2020 up until early 2025.

Different questions for different council types

Different council types have different powers. Therefore, questions are only asked to a council where they have power or influence on that topic. For example, county councils are not Planning Authorities so there are only two questions in the Planning section that apply to county councils. To understand more about the different powers that different councils have, check out this blog from the Institute for Government. This is why, sometimes, you will see, for example, questions 1, 2, and 4 but not question 3, as question 3 doesn't apply to the council you have selected.

There are a few questions in the Scorecards that apply to some councils but not others, depending on their powers or local situation. As almost a third of district and single tier authorities do not directly own or manage their own housing so the questions relating to council owned homes (in Buildings & Heating and Planning & Land Use) do not apply to these councils. These questions only apply to councils that, via FOIs, tell us if they directly manage any council homes and how many.

In Transport, if a council does not receive penalty marks in Transport Q12a (where penalty marks are awarded if a council has a significant proportion of neighbourhoods above the WHO NO2 guidelines), then questions 5a and 5b, which ask if councils have implemented clean air zones, will not apply to them. This change primarily affects those councils which are more rural and would be unlikely to implement a clean air zone as their air quality is less likely to be above WHO guidelines.

Combined Authorities

Combined authorities have quite different powers and responsibilities to other council structures. This is why there are fewer sections and questions for combined authorities. Of all the questions for combined authorities, just under half of these questions are the same as for other council types. The remaining questions are only applicable to combined authorities, of which some of these questions are similar to questions being asked of other council types. You can read our blog listed here for further information on how combined authority powers differ to other council types and why we created the combined authority methodology the way we did.

Question weighting within sections

Question weighting within sections has remained the same from the 2023 Action Scorecards for the 2025 Action Scorecards for all questions except five of them. The five questions which have changed in weighting are:

  • Transport Q6: Has the council taken clear steps to support active travel? Has changed from a high to medium weighting
  • Transport Q9: Does the council have a workplace parking levy? Has changed from a high to medium weighting
  • Buildings & Heating Q5: Is the council part of a programme or partnership to support home retrofitting, through providing the skills and training needed or in other ways? Has changed from a medium to low weighting
  • Waste Reduction & Food Q8: How high is the councils' area wide annual recycling rate? Has changed from a medium to low weighting
  • Waste Reduction & Food Q9: How low is the councils' area wide level of household waste produced? Has changed from a low to medium weighting

The question weighting determines the importance of that question to the overall section score. All questions in the Action Scorecards are out of a number of marks, ranging from 1 to 6, as well as some questions where penalty points are awarded and councils lose marks (more on penalty marks below). This is the raw mark for each question.

To ensure appropriate weighting to each question, each raw score for a question has been translated into a score out of one, two or three, depending on whether the question is weighted low (one), medium (two) or high (three). We have converted each raw mark into the equivalent fraction out of one, two or three. For example, if a question is out of 4 raw marks and the question is weighted as high, then if a council scores 2 out of 4, their weighted score would be 1.5 out of 3. If a council had scored 1 out of 4, their weighted score would be 0.75 out of 3. More on how we calculated the final scores here.

All questions in the Action Scorecards are weighted low, medium or high (except the penalty mark questions and question 2 in Transport, which receives one point for every option).

Why do you have question weighting?

All of the actions that we are marking in our Scorecard questions are important: all of these actions will reduce greenhouse gas emissions and are actions that we want to see councils undertake, but within this, there are some actions that have a bigger and more direct impact on reducing emissions.

The questions that are weighted high are those which we consider to have the biggest impact on greenhouse gas emission reductions and a sustained long-term impact. For example, low emission policies implemented in Local Plans will have a huge impact on all new homes built over the next 10 years. Questions that are also key to enabling climate actions for councils are weighted high, such as whether they are finding finance for their climate actions or whether they have an annual Climate Action Plan Update.

Areas of action where the impact on greenhouse gas emissions is one step removed, or where the impact on emissions is reliant on other actors and actions, such as the national UK Government and devolved assemblies, are marked as medium.

For example, employing a retrofit officer is a really important action that councils can take, but this action alone won't reduce greenhouse gas emissions from homes and buildings. It's the work that this person will do, with other actors and funding that will lead to emission reductions. Another example is recycling; whilst councils can have a big role in improving recycling rates, it is also dependent on residents' behaviour, national policy and how supermarkets package their food.

Questions that are weighted low include all actions which relate solely to the councils' own activities. These questions include: changing council processes to be more climate friendly; actions where councils have limited direct influence; and actions that are about the climate action strength of written strategies and plans. This is because council-only greenhouse gas emissions are a tiny part of an area's overall emissions, between 2% and 7%.

These Scorecards focus on action, so whilst there is benefit in us scoring the strength of written plans, this too is weighted low. For the Planning section, we are scoring the strength of a councils' Local Plan and for this section, questions measuring the strength of their written Local Plan have been given low, medium and high weightings. This is because we recognise that sustainability requirements in a Local Plan are a significant change in policy.

Penalty Marks

Penalty marks have remained exactly the same from the 2023 Action Scorecards for the 2025 Action Scorecards except for a small change with question 12a in the Transport section.

If a council does not receive penalty marks for this question (Transport Q12a), where penalty marks are awarded if a council has a significant proportion of neighbourhoods above the WHO NO2 guidelines, then Transport questions 5a and 5b, which ask if councils have implemented clean air zones, do not apply to them. This change primarily affects those councils which are more rural and would be unlikely to implement a clean air zone as their air quality is less likely to be above WHO guidelines.

There are four questions where councils can receive penalty marks and they lose marks. These are questions where the action that a council has taken is contributing to higher carbon emissions. Where a council has been awarded the penalty mark, the penalty mark is a percentage reduction of the maximum possible score for this section. This is how all penalty marks are calculated for all councils types and all penalty mark questions, except for county councils for Question 11 in Planning and Land Use. For this question, the penalty marks for county councils is up to 4.5 points (equivalent to the penalty mark percentage deduction for single-tier authorities) to be taken off their total section score. This has been done this way because the maximum number of raw marks county councils can be awarded in this section is 3 and approving fossil fuel infrastructure, such as new oil drilling or a coal mine has a major effect on increasing emissions.

These penalty marks only apply in three sections: Transport, Governance & Finance and Planning and Land Use. Not all of the penalty mark questions apply to all council types, due to the difference in council powers.

You can see below which questions carry penalty marks, which council types these questions apply to and the penalty mark awarded.

SectionQuestion numberQuestionApplies toPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score
Section TransportQuestion number 11aQuestion Has the council approved, expanded or built a high carbon transport project since 2019?Applies to Single tier, District, County and Northern Irish councilsPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score Penalty mark of -5% for roads

Penalty mark of -15% for airports

Total penalty mark of -20%
Section TransportQuestion number 1aQuestion Does the combined authority's Transport Plan include expanding or building a high carbon transport project?Applies to Combined authoritiesPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score Penalty mark of -5% for roads

Penalty mark of -15% for airports

Total penalty mark of -20%
Section TransportQuestion number 12aQuestion Do the NO2 levels in a significant proportion of neighbourhoods within the council's area exceed the safe World Health Organisation (WHO) air pollution guidelines?Applies to Single tier & DistrictPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score Lower Tier: -2% of maximum possible section score.

Higher Tier: -6% of maximum possible section score.

Total negative score is -6%
Section TransportQuestion number 12bQuestion Do the PM 2.5 levels in a significant proportion of neighbourhoods in the council's area exceed the safe World Health Organisation (WHO) air pollution guidelines?Applies to Single tier & DistrictPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score Lower Tier: -2% of maximum possible section score.

Higher Tier: -4% of maximum possible section score.

Total negative score is -4%
Section Governance & FinanceQuestion number 12Question Does the council have direct investments in airports or high carbon intensive energy industries?Applies to Single tier, District, County and Northern Irish councilsPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score Penalty mark of - 15% for direct investments in airports or high carbon intensive energy industries.
Section PlanningQuestion number 11Question Has the Council approved a planning application for a carbon intensive energy system to be built or expanded from 2019?Applies to Single tier, County councils and Northern Irish councilsPenalty Mark: percentage reduction from the maximum possible section score Penalty mark of -20% for Single tier councils

Penalty mark of -4.5 points for county councils (equivalent to the penalty mark for single-tier authorities)

Section Summaries and Weightings

Sections summary

Buildings & Heating

Buildings and Heating is one of the biggest sectors of carbon and other greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. This section covers the main actions that councils can take to support both private rented and owned homes and socially renting households to reduce the emissions from their homes.

Transport

Transport is the other biggest sector of greenhouse gas emissions in the UK. This section covers the main enabling actions councils can take to reduce car use and encourage more sustainable transport within their area.

Governance & Finance

This section aims to understand to what extent climate action has been incorporated and embedded across the whole of the council in all its activities and services in its decision making, forward planning and structures. This section also looks at how councils are raising funds for climate action and whether the councils' investments are sustainable or supporting high carbon infrastructure and industries.

Planning and Land Use

This section focuses primarily on how councils are using their planning powers, primarily through their Local Plans, to ensure low emission new buildings and homes, as well as ensuring new developments are built to minimise their environmental impact. This section also covers the renewable energy generation and fossil fuel generation planning applications in the area.

Biodiversity

The climate emergency is deeply connected to the ecological emergency. This section looks at what councils can do to protect and increase biodiversity in the area through their direct actions, the management of their green spaces, and biodiversity net gain requirements for developers.

Collaboration & Engagement

This section addresses how councils can collaborate with others to improve their own climate action and to support others in the area to decarbonise. More than half of the emissions cuts needed to reach net zero rely on people and businesses taking up low-carbon solutions1, and councils can work with those in their local area to enable those solutions.

Waste Reduction & Food

This section looks at the influencing role councils can play in supporting sustainable food production on their land and in their schools, and circular economy initiatives locally. Councils also have an important role to play in waste and recycling locally and improving this.

1Local Authorities and the Sixth Carbon Budgets, The Climate Change Committee

Section weightings

Section weightings have remained exactly the same as the 2023 Action Scorecards for the 2025 Action Scorecards.

Different sections have been weighted differently, and the reasons for this are explained below.

SectionDistrictSingle TierCountyNorthern Ireland
Section TransportDistrict 5%Single Tier 20%County 30%Northern Ireland 15%
Section Buildings & HeatingDistrict 25%Single Tier 20%County 20%Northern Ireland 20%
Section Governance & FinanceDistrict 15%Single Tier 15%County 15%Northern Ireland 20%
Section PlanningDistrict 25%Single Tier 15%County 5%Northern Ireland 15%
Section BiodiversityDistrict 10%Single Tier 10%County 10%Northern Ireland 10%
Section Collaboration & EngagementDistrict 10%Single Tier 10%County 10%Northern Ireland 10%
Section Waste Reduction & FoodDistrict 10%Single Tier 10%County 10%Northern Ireland 10%

Section weightings for Combined Authorities

SectionCombined Authority
Section TransportCombined Authority 25%
Section Buildings, Heating & Green SkillsCombined Authority 25%
Section Governance & FinanceCombined Authority 20%
Section Planning, Biodiversity and Land UseCombined Authority 10%
Section Collaboration & EngagementCombined Authority 20%

Transport and Buildings & Heating

These are the areas where councils can have the biggest impact on area wide greenhouse gas emissions. It is also where single tier councils can take the most effective action to reduce emissions; therefore they have been given the highest weighting. County councils have more powers over transport than district councils, which is why this section is weighted higher for county councils and a lot lower for district councils.

Planning & Land Use and Governance & Finance

These sections have a less direct impact on emissions reduction. However, they have a considerable impact on enabling climate action and embedding it in longer-term policies. All council types have similar power and responsibilities in Governance & Finance and the actions scored in this section demonstrate the council’s commitment to reducing emissions and embedding climate action across the council. Planning & Land Use is one of the areas where single tier and district councils can be the most effective and also hold a lot of power, both for mitigation and adaptation, hence the higher weighting here than for the final three sections. County councils are not planning authorities which explains their lower section weighting for the Planning section.

Collaboration & Engagement, Biodiversity and Waste Reduction & Food

For these sections all councils have the same section weightings. This is because, while still vital, the actions scored in these three sections have the lowest direct impact on emission reduction, and within them, all council types have similar powers in relation to what they can influence. It is also harder to assess the effective engagement and communication of a council, and typically councils that effectively engage their residents will have more buy-in and be able to be more ambitious, so they will be able to score more elsewhere.

All councils have less powers over food. For biodiversity, waste reduction and food, a significant amount of actions and emissions are outside of councils’ control, so a lower weighting has been given to these sections to reflect this. This is not a reflection of the wider importance of biodiversity, food and waste to address the climate emergency.

The powers that Northern Irish councils have are different to other nations. For example, Northern Irish councils have less control over Transport, Planning & Land Use and Buildings & Heating, which is why the weightings for Northern Ireland are different.

The powers that combined authorities have are different to other council types. For example, combined authorities have almost no power or responsibility for Waste Reduction & Food, other than Manchester Combined Authority which works with other councils in the area as a waste collection authority (and the Greater London Authority and theWest Midlands Combined Authority play a small role in waste regionally too). In other areas, Combined Authorities have more power, funding and influence, such as in adult education and green skills which is why these questions have been added to the Buildings & Heating section, making it the Buildings, Heating and Green Skills section. Combined Authorities have less power over new and existing buildings and their carbon emissions in an area hence changing the Buildings & Heating questions to include more on Green Skills.

Calculating the final score

There are four stages to creating the final score.

  1. Raw marks are converted into low, medium and high weighted marks.
  2. Penalty marks are deducted where councils have received them.
  3. Total weighted marks are added up and converted into an overall percentage score for each section.
  4. The final score is created from adding up the overall section scores and applying the section weighting. For example, receiving a 50% score in Collaboration & Engagement equals 5% of a council’s overall score. This is because Collaboration & Engagement is worth 10% of a council's overall score.

What We are Marking

Publicly available council information

Unless stated otherwise in the question criteria, we will score councils on any actions that they have taken since 1st January 2020 up until October 2024. We chose this date because it was in 2019 that councils started declaring climate emergencies and we want to score councils on their action since this (renewed) commitment to climate action came into effect.

For example, if a council approved a solar panel farm in 2017 and no further renewable energy since then, the council would not get a point for the relevant question here. This is because councils need to be taking consistent climate action, so we expect councils to be consistently pursuing actions such as this since 1st January 2019.

This does not entirely mean that councils' scores do not reflect action taken before 1st January 2020. For example, if a council worked hard to improve the EPC ratings of its council homes before 2020 through retrofitting and other insulation measures, then their average EPC ratings of these homes is likely to be higher, and they would therefore score higher for this particular question.

Whilst these Scorecards focus on council action, there are some questions that look at the details of particular policies. When we look at policies and strategies, they must be in date. For example if a Local Plan is dated 2015-2025, then this is scored.

We look for evidence that is publicly available across a wide variety of documents. Documents where this evidence might be available that we consider when marking includes, but is not limited to:

General (used across all sections)

  • News stories on council websites
  • News stories in local media
  • Climate Action Plans
  • Climate Action Plan Updates
  • Climate sections of council websites

Section specific documents

Buildings & Heating
  • Housing strategies
  • Fuel poverty strategies
  • Home Energy Conservation Report (HECA)
Transport
  • Transport strategy
Governance & Finance
  • Corporate Plan
  • Medium-term Financial Plan
  • Risk register
  • Full Council minutes
  • Infrastructure Funding Statement
  • Pension Investment strategies
  • Procurement strategies
  • Treasury management strategies
  • Statement of Accounts
Planning
  • Local Plans and related documents
  • Supplementary Planning documents
  • Parking Standards
Biodiversity
  • Biodiversity strategy
  • Tree strategy
  • Local Plan or relevant Development Plan documents
Collaboration & Engagement
  • Climate public engagement strategies
  • Joint Strategic Needs Assessment
  • Health partnership pages
  • Local Enterprise Partnership pages
Waste Reduction & Food
  • Waste strategies
  • Food strategies
  • External event policies
  • School catering contracts and tenders

National data

For some of the questions, we use external data, compiled by the UK Government, the Devolved Nations or other national non-governmental organisations. We use this data for specific questions only and the use of this data is not an endorsement of the organisation or government body. Unless otherwise stated in the question criteria, we use the most recent national data available up until Spring 2025.

Freedom of Information Requests

We will send FOI requests (technically sent as Environmental Information Regulations (EIR) requests) to all UK councils in late summer 2024 using WhatDoTheyKnow (run by mySociety). You can see the lists of FOI requests we will send here.

Any response provided via WhatDoTheyKnow from a council is valid. The same as last year, if a council responds to all FOI requests in one response, this is valid. If a council responds to an FOI with a link to a portal to sign up or create a password and view the response with a time limit, this response will not be used. This is because the underlying principles of FOI/EIR requests is to make information freely and easily available and responding with information behind passwords or a time limit is not freely available.

Volunteers are trained to read the FOI responses from councils and log the responses appropriately during the first mark and councils are able to see their own FOI responses during the Right of Reply.

Following the same as last year, if a council responds with information in the Right of Reply that is different to information we receive via WhatDoTheyKnow we will use the information provided in the Right of Reply to award marks for the relevant questions in the Scorecards. We also annotate the original FOIs with this updated information, which will be visible on the relevant FOIs onWhatDoTheyKnow when the FOIs responses are published.

FOI responses and responses from councils provided in the Right of Reply will be reviewed as part of the audit when awarding the final score.

To find out more about how we created each section and why questions or topics were or were not included, check out our blog series on the draft methodology here.

New or Councils that have changed structures

As per last year, we will not be scoring new councils or combined authorities that are created in the year that we start marking. Three new or merged combined authorities have been created in 2024 and they will not be marked in the 2025 Action Scorecards. These following combined authorities that we are not marking in 2025 are: East Midlands Combined County Authority, York and North Yorkshire Combined Authority and North East Mayoral Combined Authority.

Developing the scoring system

Extensive desk-based research was carried out to create the Council Climate Action Scorecards methodology in 2022, of which much has remained the same for the updated 2025 draft methodology. Hundreds of documents were read as part of this process. Some of the key documents that were the foundation for the research were:

We also carried out extensive consultation and benefited from advice and feedback from a wide variety of people and organisations, through our Advisory Group, sector-specific consultations, one-to-one conversations and group consultations.

Advisory Group

Since May 2022, Climate Emergency UK has had an Advisory Group to guide the creation of the Scorecard methodology. This Advisory Group includes council staff, councillors and experts within the sector who have been meeting monthly to provide detailed feedback on each question as they have been created.

Following the publication of the 2023 Council Climate Action Scorecards we have renewed the membership of the Advisory Group. The membership of the 2024/25 Advisory Group is as follows.

Continuing members:

  • Jon Burke - Climate Change and Decarbonisation Lead, Gloucester City Council
  • Simon Jermy - Climate Emergency Manchester
  • Donna Stimson - Founder of Green Skills Library and former Climate Cabinet Lead for Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead

New members:

  • Julia Cushion - Policy & Advocacy Manager, mySociety
  • Ania Campbell - Climate Change Manager, North Kesteven District Council
  • Will Pearson - Climate Change Strategy Manager, Cheshire West & Chester Council
  • Cllr Richard Clewer - Leader of Wiltshire Council
  • Cllr Lara Davenport-Ray - Executive Councillor for Climate & Environment at Huntingdonshire District Council
  • Fiona Dyer - Climate Action Durham and Scorecards volunteer
  • Amy Bell - Climate Northern Ireland Officer

Consultations

Climate Emergency UK has spoken to over 90 different organisations in the creation of the Scorecards methodology that was published in 2023 . You can see the majority of organisations we spoke to in our Thank You section below.

We conducted 121 conversations and small group consultations on each section of the Scorecards. We also held two larger consultations, one with council staff and councillors, which almost 200 people attended, and another with campaign groups and external organisations that work with councils on climate action.

Trial marking

We use trial marking and (trial FOIs where needed) to test new questions in the methodology. For 2025 all new questions will have been trial marked (and FOIs sent if needed) before being used in the methodology by volunteers.

To create the complete methodology in 2023 staff conducted a trial mark on a select number of councils to test the draft questions. Following this, a volunteer trial mark was also carried out to further test the draft questions on a different, select number of councils.

A small number of Freedom of Information (FOI) requests were also sent out to a random selection of councils in 2023. This was important to learn how best to ask the FOI questions to create the least amount of work for councils when responding and for us when collecting the data. The recipients were chosen at random in order to have a variety of council types in the trial. Here you can see all the trial FOI requests on WhatDoTheyKnow that we sent in 2023. Please note that these are different to the final FOI requests included in the Scorecards methodology, and some trial FOI requests were not used in the 2023 Action Scorecards.

Scoring Process

First Mark

A team of volunteers mark all questions for all councils that are marked by volunteer research as shown in the methodology according to the question criteria. About two thirds of all of the Scorecard questions are marked by volunteer research.

Right of Reply

All councils in the UK are sent their first mark for all questions marked by volunteer research and questions marked by FOI requests. Councils can see which questions had received marks, but they can’t see individual scores for questions or their overall score. All councils are given a right of reply. Councils have five weeks to respond.In 2023, 74% of all UK councils responded to the Right of Reply.

Scoring Audit

During the scoring audit a team of around 50 highly trained volunteers and CE UK staff review the first mark alongside the council's right of reply. All plans are audited regardless of whether the council responds to the right of reply. National data is also inputted into the Scorecards to create the final score.

Further info

To find out more about Climate Emergency UK please visit our website. You can also explore the Council Climate Action Scorecards results from October 2023 here.

If you have any further comments, questions or feedback please use our contact form here.

Thank you

These Scorecards would not have been possible without the advice, comments and feedback from the many different organisations we spoke to, as well as our trial volunteer markers and most importantly our Scorecard volunteers assessors and auditors.

Special thanks to mySociety, who have provided technical support in the creation of the Scorecard methodology. We also want to thank the many councillors and council staff we spoke to, who represented all council types and work across the four nations. Thank you also to the more than 90 different organisations we spoke to for comment and advice on the original Scorecards creation throughout 2022, on specific questions, sections or general advice. The vast majority of the organisations we spoke to are listed here in alphabetical order.

  • 20’s Plenty for Us
  • Abundance Investment
  • Active Travel Academy
  • Ad Free Cities
  • ADEPT
  • Anthesis
  • Architects Action Network
  • Association of Local Government Ecologists
  • Badvertising
  • Brighton Peace and Environment Centre
  • British Lung Foundation
  • Buglife
  • Campaign for Better Transport
  • Carbon Co-op
  • Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy
  • CLES
  • Climate Conversations
  • Climate Emergency Manchester
  • Climate Museum UK
  • Collective for Climate Action
  • Community Energy England
  • Community Rights Planning
  • CoMoUK
  • Crossing Footprints
  • Culture Declares Emergency
  • Cycle Streets
  • Cycling UK
  • Democracy Club
  • Department of Transport
  • Energy Savings Trust
  • Food For Life
  • Food Matters
  • Friends of the Earth
  • Generation Rent
  • Green Finance Institute
  • Green Flag (Keep Britain Tidy)
  • Institute for Local Government
  • Involve
  • Living Streets
  • Local Partnerships
  • London Cycling Campaign
  • Making Places Together
  • mySociety
  • National Farmers’ Union
  • Passivhaus Homes
  • Pesticides Action Network
  • PETA (People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals)
  • Place Based Carbon Calculator
  • Planning Aid Wales
  • Planning Scotland
  • Plantlife
  • Plastic Free Communities
  • Possible
  • ProVeg
  • Quantum Strategy & Technology
  • Solar Together
  • Southampton Climate Action Network
  • Sustain
  • Sustrans
  • The Campaign to Protect Rural England
  • The Climate Change Committee
  • The Soil Association
  • The Wildlife Trusts
  • Town and Country Planning Association
  • Transport Action Network
  • Transport for New Homes
  • Tree Economics
  • Turing Institute
  • UK Divest
  • WasteDataFlow
  • Wirral Environmental Network
  • Wildlife & Countryside Link
  • Winchester Action on Climate Change
  • Zap Map