Published: 13:06, 02 June 2021
| Updated: 13:24, 02 June 2021
A council wants to invest more than £11 million to reduce its carbon output.
Medway Council's carbon footprint represents 1.4% of emissions in the Towns, and it wants to reduce this by 95% by the middle of the century.
Since declaring a climate emergency in 2019, the council has been developing plans to reduce its carbon emissions, which have so far included adopting the Kent and Medway Energy and Low Emissions Strategy, a joint approach with Kent County Council.
Other measures which have taken place so far include dedicating £11 million towards replacing street lighting with LED lights, planting more than 13,000 small trees and increasing cycleways.
An additional £11.7 million in estimated investment would be needed to implement all the additional measures the council wants to take which include energy efficiency measures within council buildings, installation of solar power systems and LED lighting in corporate buildings, car parks and housing stock.
The council also wants to upgrade its fleet vehicles to zero and ultra low emission but this would involve upgrading the electricity supply in the car park at their Gun Wharf headquarters which alone would cost over £100,000.
The wealth of funding for the scheme of action would come from a programme called Re:fit in which borrowing is funded from longer-term savings generated from making the utilities on the council's estates more energy efficient.
Cabinet members will be asked to approve the climate change action plan on Tuesday, June 8. It will be a live document which will be reviewed annually.
They will also be asked to approve plans to commence the Re:fit programme this summer; the first phase of work is expected to cost up to £3.5 million and make savings of £276,000 each year.
Full council will then be asked to add £8.5 million to the council's capital programme to deliver the next three phases of work.