Don’t forget to have your say on climate change

18/01/2021, PR-9794

​There's still time for the district's residents, businesses, and school children to share their thoughts and feelings regarding climate change issues.

Wakefield Council made an ambitious and important pledge to become a carbon neutral organisation by 2030 and the newly published Climate Change Action Plan (CCAP) outlines how this promise will be fulfilled.

The Council is asking residents, local businesses, and secondary and primary school pupils for their views on climate change - to gauge levels of understanding regarding the science, perceived impacts, and the importance attributed to climate change related issues by individuals and businesses. This will help to prioritise and structure future work, whilst also opening up effective communication routes to engage with key stakeholder groups and more generally, to keep people updated on progress and opportunities in relation to carbon reduction work for both the organisation and the district as a whole.

There will be some prizes available for filling out the survey, with every participant who's willing to share their details entering a draw to win one of three 'goodie bags' worth around £300 of low carbon household products and appliances for the residents' survey specifically. There will also be several free energy audits available for businesses, which fall under the definition of a small to medium-sized enterprise (SME) – subject to a separate prize draw – to help them to become more energy efficient.

Cllr Jack Hemingway

​Cllr Jack Hemingway, Wakefield Council's Cabinet Member for Climate Change and Green Spaces, said: "We all need to work together collectively to combat the threat of climate change. That is why it is so important to us to find out what matters to our residents and businesses and how we can support them to shape our plans. It is also crucial that we involve the younger generation, who will be the ones most affected by a changing climate.

"We know people have others things on their mind at the moment, but there is still plenty of time to get involved with the consultation so please let us have your views before the end of the month."

The surveys can be completed in under 10 minutes. Residents, business and secondary school surveys can be found online at www.wakefield.gov.uk/climate. As part of the primary school survey there is a poster competition, due to children being home schooled this month, any parents wishing for their child to take part please email climateaction@wakefield.gov.uk  and an education pack can be sent out along with the questions to help parents talk about this subject with their child.

There will be another prize draw competition for participating secondary schools to win tree saplings to enable the planting of a hedgerow on school grounds, which will improve the visual amenity of the surrounding community, help improve air quality, offset carbon, aid educational work, and provide biodiversity benefits as well. This package will be worth around £1,000. Primary schools will be able to take part in a poster competition on 'how to reduce the effects of climate change'. The artwork from three winners will form part of the CCAP communications campaign. They will also win nature friendly bundles for their schools including bug hotels, bat boxes, trees and plants, and veg/wildflower planters. The 1st prize nature pack will be worth up to £1,000.

All of the prizes chosen to encourage responses to this public consultation exercise have been carefully selected to help the Council achieve its objectives to reduce carbon emissions across the district and to support a nature recovery to address the ecological crisis.

All surveys are open until 31 January 2021. For more information and to get involved, visit www.wakefield.gov.uk/climate.