All local authorities are expected to publish data on emissions in line with guidance from government. This data is collated and published annually for local authorities by the Department for Energy and Climate Change.
The record of greenhouse gas emissions (measured in equivalent tonnes of carbon dioxide - CO2e) associated with Suffolk County Council's energy use during 2011/12 can be seen below:
- At first glance they show a significant drop (10,525 tonnes since the 2008/09 baseline year), however after correcting for the mild winter (which saved 3,630 tonnes) and falling staff numbers (which saved a further 1,283 tonnes) the drop is 5,612 tonnes or 6.2% since our baseline year.
- The County Council has an ambition for Suffolk to become ‘The Greenest County’ and will be endeavouring to improve on our historic performance to ensure we work towards an annual reduction of 3% to meet the target set in Suffolk’s Community Strategy of a 60% reduction on 2004 levels by 2025.
|Scope 1 (direct) (iii)||27,971||36,135||36,997|
|Scope 2 (energy indirect) (iii)||46,191||48,381||47,083|
|Scope 3 (other indirect) (iv)||5,287||5,956||5,876|
|Total gross emissions||79,449||90,472||89,956|
|Carbon offsets (v)||18||0||0|
|Total net emissions||79,431 (i)||90,472 (ii)||89,956 (ii)|
(i) Performance: The table shows a drop of 10,525 tonnes over three years. After correcting our building heating emissions for the mild 2011/12 winter (in comparison to the baseline) using the degree days method and the East Anglia region reference site at Wattisham, the drop in emissions is reduced to 6,895 tonnes over three years (7.7%; 2.6% p.a.). If we make a further adjustment to reflect falling staff levels (pro rata drop in car based business mileage and non school building emissions) the drop is reduced to 5,612 tonnes over three years i.e. 6.2%; 2.1% p.a.
(ii) Production: The statement has been produced by applying relevant conversion factors (in line with central government guidance) to the following data: Energy use in buildings and for street lighting / traffic signalling; fleet vehicle fuel use / mileage; mileage claimed by employees and Councillors for journeys in their own vehicles on Council business; Hire car contractors mileage reports. There is no external assurance. Emissions associated with extraction and transport of primary fuels is now included (hence the change in tonnages for 2010/11 and the baseline year in comparison to the statement published last year; the same conversion factors have been applied to each year’s data).
(iii) Scope 1 relates to the burning of fuel in our buildings and fleet vehicles; we have not included fugitive emissions from refrigerants (our increased use of biomass since the baseline year means our emissions for 2011/12 are around 177 tonnes less than they would have been). Scope 2 is emissions associated with our electricity consumption. Schools (including Academies) and care homes have been included since the Authority is responsible for these emissions under the Carbon Reduction Commitment scheme.
(iv) Scope 3 emissions included are operational travel in employees’ and Councillors’ own vehicles and travel in vehicles which the authority leases or hires from its major contractors (equivalent to fleet vehicle emissions from a management viewpoint). Elements of the Authority’s footprint not included are: Outsourced operations (the one exception is the Customer Service Direct contract, given this organisation’s operation is tightly coupled to the Authority, and is predominantly staffed by employees on secondment from the Authority); Operational travel on public transport; Commuting; Embedded emissions (i.e. emissions associated with the manufacture and delivery of the wide variety of products and services that we buy); Emissions associated with the activities of other organisations and citizens, when these activities arise solely from their use of our services.
(v) Carbon Offset: This is 20% of the Solar PV electricity we have generated. We’ve assumed the other 80% has been consumed by the Authority, reducing our scope 2 emissions by 73 tonnes.