East Suffolk case study

Supporting East Suffolk Council to become Carbon Neutral

In July 2019, East Suffolk Council recognised the existence of a ‘climate emergency’ and asked Groundwork’s Sustainable Business Consultants to investigate ways in which it could become carbon neutral by 2030.

As the country’s largest district council providing services to over 248,000 residents and more than 9,000 enterprises, East Suffolk Council wanted to investigate ways in which it could become carbon neutral by 2030.

Groundwork’s Sustainable Business Consultants carried out an independent desk-based review of East Suffolk Council’s current carbon emissions, its progress to date and an assessment of the carbon reduction opportunities available to East Suffolk Council.

Groundwork worked directly with staff at East Suffolk Council to ensure support was tailored to specific requirements. This involved understanding the work that East Suffolk Council have already undertaken and what was in the pipeline.

Industry-leading tools were used to calculate and forecast a comprehensive and achievable pathway to net zero emissions. This included benchmarking of the Council’s properties to identify areas of good practice, as well as the sites which should be prioritised for action. Opportunities for reducing the Council’s other carbon emissions were also investigated and the costs and benefits of doing so highlighted.

Following a comprehensive review of carbon reduction strategies, our expert sustainability consultants identified a variety of carbon reduction opportunities including:

  • Improving the energy efficiency of Council buildings
  • Installing solar PV across the Council’s entire property portfolio, including Council owned houses
  • Upgrading fleet vehicles to electric vehicles
  • Use Council owned land to draw down carbon

The carbon savings identified have the potential to achieve a significant reduction in East Suffolk Council’s current carbon footprint.

“The detailed report, with many references to best practice, has provided an excellent review of what we’ve already achieved and what our Climate Change Action Plan needs to focus on in the future. The findings from the review were presented by Groundwork to the members of our Environment Task Group at their first meeting.”

Phil Gore, Head of Environmental Services and Port Health, East Suffolk Council