Further £2m to tackle climate emergency in Suffolk 

Suffolk Public Sector Leaders pledges extra funds for projects including low-carbon transport, sustainable homes and cleaner energy. 

The money will also be used to support businesses and communities in the region with environmental initiatives, and help Suffolk meet its ambition to be net zero.

Willie Lott’s Cottage in Suffolk, photo by JR P

The Suffolk Public Sector Leaders group (SPSL) was established in 2009 to consider issues of strategic importance to the county. It meets four or five times each year to discuss matters such as inclusive economic growth, community safety, climate change and strong communities. It focuses priority where collaborative action delivers the biggest benefits. 

In June 2021, SPSL committed £1.5m to support the delivery of the Suffolk Climate Emergency Plan. That funding went to such things as community climate action, technical support for community energy groups, homeowner energy efficiency, a net zero innovation fund for businesses, and development of Suffolk’s electric vehicle charging network. 

A further £1.962m has now been agreed for 2024 and 2025, to be distributed for work across five key themes: 

1. Collaborative action 

  • Match funder for parish council and VCSO sectors 
  • Dedicated communications and engagement resource extension 

2. Sustainable homes 

  • Delivery resource and retrofit assessments for homeowners 

3. Low-carbon transport 

  • Active travel schemes development support 
  • First mile / last mile delivery service pilot 
  • Smaller, demand-based EV transport provision 

4. Industrial and commercial 

  • High energy users lead  
  • Net zero advice hub, including net zero tourism sector support 
  • Net zero schools support network 

5. Cleaner power 

  • District heating network development co-ordinator and operational budget 

Cllr Neil MacDonald, Chair of SPSL, says: ‘Suffolk becoming net zero is a long-term objective, and Suffolk Public Sector Leaders are pleased to be able to support such an important initiative, which continues to deliver demonstrable results. This funding will support the delivery of various projects throughout 2024 and 2025, as well as engaging with key stakeholders.’  

Cllr Gerald Kelly, Chair of the Local Authority Environment Portfolio Holders Group, adds: ‘From helping residents to live in warmer homes that are more affordable to heat, improving our energy security, air quality and general health, strengthening community cohesion and creating job opportunities in emerging sectors, action around climate change is about so much more than reducing carbon emissions.  

‘This additional funding from SPSL will enable us to realise many more such benefits for everyone in Suffolk.’ 

In related news:

Tech skills shortage in London holds back green economy 

300MW from five solar sites in England 

£60m for two new co-centres on climate and sustainable food 


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