Climate

How is the council already tackling climate change?

Efficient Buildings

  • The council has worked with Thames Water to explore the possibilities of harnessing heat to warm local houses, public buildings and businesses
  • Reviewed the delivery of our property services, with new positions focussed on energy management and sustainable construction, working to a new head of service responsible for the sustainability of our estate
  • Redesigned facilities management to focus on social and environmental outcomes, including removal of single use plastics, reducing use of harmful chemicals and more sustainable maintenance approaches
  • Baselined and benchmarked the emissions for each of our assets, and are using this data as a core consideration for estates based decision making
  • Approved a business case to install automatic utility meters in all of our assets, so we can get more accurate, real time data to underpin effective decision making
  • Started upgrading our mechanical and electrical installations, including installing Light Emitting Diode (LED) lighting, better insulation and more efficient heating systems

Efficient Homes

  • The council has supported two rounds of the ‘Solar Together’ programme, linking residents with providers of solar photovoltaic panels and battery storage. 779 properties have registered their interest in the scheme so far
  • Undertaken a stock condition survey of our Council properties so we can develop budget proposals for retrofit
  • Used carbon offset funds to run the ‘Warm Homes Better Health’ programme to support residents in fuel poverty

How we travel

  • The council has opened a new Cycle Hub next to the station which has space for almost 400 bikes, with a new cycle and pedestrian bridge linking the station and the river and adjoining cycle routes
  • Increased the number of school streets in the borough to help tackle poor air quality associated with the school run
  • Introduced three Low Traffic Neighbourhoods to prevent the roads being used as the through-route for motor traffic
  • Installed 130 electric vehicle chargers across the borough
  • Begun to replace our fleet with electric vehicles 

Waste Reduction

  • The council has started recycling the material collected from our road sweeping machines
  • Introduced a booking system and fair use policy at the Household Recycling Centre to encourage waste reduction and the separation of items for recycling or reuse
  • Increased the number of households using the garden waste recycling service
  • Established a Fly Tipping Task Force to tackle local waste issues

Green Economy

The council has established the Transition to a Green Economy working group as part of the Kingston Economic Recovery Taskforce. This group focuses on four Priority thematic areas:

  • Greening local businesses
  • Decarbonising business transport
  • Developing of a Green Skills Action Plan in conjunction with local partners, neighbouring south London boroughs and the GLA, which will result in new funding for green skills development across local businesses 
  • Creating ‘deep green’ high streets and town centres

Sustainable Council

  • The council has funded a programme to move all of Kingston’s street lights to 100% LED by 2023. This will reduce the amount of energy used for street lighting around 50%
  • Established a climate emergency staff network and a director and assistant director led climate emergency steering group
  • Implemented a responsible investment strategy for our pension fund 
  • Developed a new commissioning framework that requires suppliers to deliver carbon reductions alongside other social benefits

Natural Environment

  • The council has employed a biodiversity officer for Kingston, and set up our biodiversity partnership
  • Re-commissioned our green spaces contracts with a focus on tackling the climate emergency
  • Planted almost 1500 new trees. We will be planting a further 500 trees between November 2021 and March 2022
  • Piloted the Wildways Strategy, an adapted mowing regime on highways verges across the borough to secure biodiversity and climate outcomes
  • Reviewed the borough’s Sites of Importance for Nature Conservation and identified 6 more for adoption
  • Trialled a reduction in the use of chemicals to control weeds

Last Modified: 13/10/2021 14:48:55