Bristol continues to have a crucial voice in the discussion about our country’s approach to delivering net zero. Yesterday we hosted a delegation of the Climate Change Committee (CCC), an independent statutory body who advise the UK and devolved governments on emissions targets and monitor the progress in reducing carbon emissions and adapting to the impacts of climate change.
The Climate Change Committee has organised a series of events in regions across the UK to explore the action being taken on the ground and the barriers that remain to deliver a net zero, climate resilient nation. We were delighted to be able to show them Bristol’s approach and work, with these conversations informing the CCC’s advice to government, shaping the steps the take to support.
We made the most of the opportunity by talking about how we are responding to climate change threats with our flood strategy, and our City Leap project. We toured the energy centre for the Old Market Heat Network, including the UK’s largest water source heat pump. The heat pump works by taking heat from the floating harbour at a low temperature and converts it to a high temperature (75 degrees) for supply into the Old Market Heat Network. We have now connected over 1,000 homes to our network, and are currently connecting offices, schools, and other public sector bodies too.
But Bristol’s offer it not just the world leading engineering and infrastructure, it’s the community collaboration and partnership working which underpin it. So we were able to highlight the Community Climate Action plans. These were co-produced by six community organisations, representing some of Bristol’s most disadvantaged communities, during 2021 as part of the lottery-funded Bristol Community Climate Action project.
The plans identify key priorities to help deliver Bristol’s 2030 carbon neutral ambition, while also improving the quality of life for local residents as the city recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. We were delighted that some of these groups, including Heart of BS13, were able to come and share their experiences. We also highlighted the Citizen’s Assembly, who have helped us develop ideas to reduce the carbon emissions from heating homes in the city.
The One City Climate Strategy aims to make Bristol carbon neutral and climate resilient by 2030. It includes a theme on nature to restore, protect and enhance spaces and the wildlife within them as the climate continues to change.
We have also established an independent advisory committee, the Bristol Advisory Committee on Climate Change, to review the strategy and the evidence. The One City Ecological Emergency Strategy works in tandem with the climate strategy, including aims to inspire a more conscious form of consumerism and to manage at least 30% of land in Bristol for the benefit of wildlife by 2030.
Together, we are tackling the Climate and Ecological Emergencies, sharing best practice with other cities, collaborating and innovating as we work to meet our 2030 environmental targets.