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Green councils

Find out how Dorset's Councils are reducing their environmental impact.

Local councils provide wide ranging services across Dorset, manage a large number of buildings and are one of the largest employers in the county. The operation of these organisations and the services they provide can have both positive and negative impacts on the environment and result in a significant carbon footprint. For example, we used 72 Million Kilo Watt hours of energy in our buildings and travelled over 5.5 million business miles last year.

Councils across Dorset have been working hard to address these environmental impacts and in particular reduce their carbon foot print.

Improving our environmental performance

Dorset County Council adopted a set of Environmental Policies in 2006 setting out commitments to improve our environmental performance by tackling energy and water use, reducing waste and encouraging staff to travel more sustainably. The latest County Council Environmental Performance and Greenhouse Gas Report gives a snapshot of our progress. Key achievement since 2009 include:

  • 16% reduction in energy used in buildings
  • 33% energy reduction from street lighting
  • 38% reduction in business miles
  • 25% less waste sent for disposal

Reducing our carbon footprint

Local Authorities in Dorset have been working with the Carbon Trust to reduce their carbon foot print. In 2009 the County Council set out a target and plan to reduce its carbon emissions by 30 per cent by 2020 and to date (as of September 2016) have reduced emissions by 13 per cent. Our actions include:

  • making our buildings more energy efficient and installing renewable energy technologies
  • encouraging staff to travel less business miles and to work from home more often
  • installing more energy efficient streetlights and switching some off when not needed
  • using more efficient fleet vehicles and planning more efficient routes
  • reducing our waste and recycling more

Further details of the measures being taken and our annual progress are found in the latest Greenhouse Gas Report.

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