Pledge to climate emergency declaration

How we'll aim to be a carbon neutral authority by 2030 in our pledge to the climate emergency declaration.

The Climate Emergency Declaration

On 21 March 2019, councillors at Suffolk County Council voted to declare a climate emergency.

Our pledge


  1. Declare a climate emergency

  2. Set up a Policy Development Panel (PDP)
    Starting by September 2019, the PDP will investigate how we can cut Suffolk County Council's carbon and harmful emissions on a spend to save basis. Our ambition is to make Suffolk County Council (including all buildings, school and services) carbon neutral by 2030.

  3. Work with partners across the county and region
    This includes working with the Local Enterprise Partnerships (LEP) and the public sector leaders, towards making the county of Suffolk carbon neutral by 2030.

  4. Work with Government to:
    A) deliver its 25 year Environment Plan and
    B) increase the powers and resources available to local authorities in order to make the 2030 target easier to achieve.

Read the agenda and minutes from 21 March 2019.

What does our pledge mean?

Suffolk County Council aims to be a carbon neutral authority by 2030. Through practical action it aims to save money, generate income and reduce carbon emissions.

Why is it important to reduce carbon emissions?

Human activities emit CO into the atmosphere. Along with other ‘greenhouse gases’, too much CO in the atmosphere raises the global temperature.

This rise in temperature will make it very difficult for nature to adapt to and thrive in such conditions.

What has been happening in Suffolk?

There have been many projects running in Suffolk for years, interested in combating climate change. Most notably, since 2007 when Lord Gummer (then John Gummer MP), initiated the Creating the Greenest County initiative for Suffolk.

All projects under this umbrella work with local communities and businesses to help them realise the economic benefits of reducing their energy consumption, adapt to climate change and enhance their natural environment.

Projects for Suffolk residents

Projects for businesses

Next steps

A Policy Development Panel at Suffolk County Council has been set up and first met in September 2019 - this is a cross-party group which is investigating how to further the record of investing to save and reducing harmful carbon emissions with the aspiration of being carbon neutral by 2030.

The current environmental policy and all related policies are currently being reviewed, to investigate ways to cut Suffolk County Council’s carbon and harmful emissions. Revised plans and policies will be presented to SCC Cabinet in the first half of 2020.


Pupils at a Suffolk primary school have won a regional award for their efforts walking and cycling to school

20 November 2019

Hundreds of local businesses realise benefits of reducing carbon emissions – and you can join them

7 November 2019

Solar Together Suffolk will help you reduce your carbon emissions – final chance to register

18 October 2019

Cross Street in Sudbury is set to get a breath of fresh air

14 October 2019

Suffolk primary school scoops sustainable travel award

9 October 2019

First time central heating systems for Suffolk residents

7 October 2019

Working together to make Suffolk the greenest county in the land

23 July 2019

Winners of Suffolk’s Creating the Greenest County awards announced

18 July 2019

Suffolk businesses celebrated for reducing carbon emissions

10 July 2019

New electric vehicle charging points to be installed in Suffolk

21 June 2019

Housing and the environment among priorities outlined by Suffolk County Council leader

23 May 2019

University’s new solar panels to offer unique research possibilities

18 Feb 2019

Suffolk wins praise at the national Community Energy Awards 2018

5 Nov 2018

Further information

  • Creating the Greenest County launched in 2007, this is an aspiration that involves the whole county in enhancing the natural and historic environment and responding to climate change
  • Suffolk Climate Change Partnership set up in 2006, this consists of Suffolk’s local authorities and the Environment Agency, working together locally with a number of other organisations including Groundwork Suffolk and the University of Suffolk
  • Suffolk Waste Partnership is a strategic partnership of the county, district and borough councils
  • The Suffolk Flood Risk Management Partnership (SFRMP) will be responsible for co-ordinating the implementation of any actions required as a result of the Floods and Water Management Act 2010 and the Flood Risk Regulations 2009
  • Suffolk Coast Forum takes a partnership approach to flood and coastal erosion risk management on the coast and estuaries and closely related issues in the context of an Integrated Coastal Zone Management approach