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Dorset Council

Declarations & pledges

Climate emergency declaration

This council declared a climate emergency on May 16, 2019.

Council only pledge for 2040

“We want to ensure we as an organisation are carbon-neutral by 2040.”

Whole area pledge for 2050

“We want to support the wider county to be carbon neutral by 2050.”

Climate Plan Scorecard

This council’s climate plans as of 20th September 2021 were assessed and scored by trained Climate Emergency UK volunteers, as part of the Council Climate Plan Scorecards project.

Show the full Scorecard Read more about the scoring process

Dorset Council was a top performer amongst single tier councils, in the Ecological emergency section.

SectionDorset CouncilAverage single tier council
Total score68%50%
Section 1 Governance, development and funding
12/21
10.3/21
Section 2 Mitigation and adaptation
16/18
9.0/18
Section 3 Commitment and integration
6/7
4.1/7
Section 4 Community, engagement and communications
8/9
5.1/9
Section 5 Measuring and setting emissions targets
1/5
2.9/5
Section 6 Co-benefits
4/4
2.2/4
Section 7 Diversity and inclusion
0/5
0.9/5
Section 8 Education, skills and training
4/5
2.3/5
Section 9 · Top performer Ecological emergency
4/4
2.1/4

Emissions data

1756.5 ktCO2e

2019 emissions

4.6 tCO2e

per capita

0.7 ktCO2e

per km2

Latest CO2 estimates from the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. County and combined authority data combined from constituent authorities.

These councils are the most similar to Dorset Council in terms of emissions profile, deprivation, rural/urban population density, and geographical nearness. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Devon County Council85%Yes2030Feb. 21, 2019
Somerset County Council84%Yes2030Feb. 20, 2019
South Somerset District Council80%Yes2023May 21, 2019
East Devon District Council79%Yes2040July 24, 2019
Mendip District Council78%Yes2030Feb. 25, 2019
Sedgemoor District Council78%Yes2030March 20, 2019
Malvern Hills District Council77%Yes2030July 23, 2019
New Forest District Council77%NoNo targetNov. 6, 2021
North Devon Council77%Yes2030July 24, 2019
Gloucestershire County Council77%Yes2030May 15, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Dorset Council in terms of their emissions profile, based on the latest data from the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Horsham District Council90%Yes2050June 26, 2019
Broadland District Council89%Yes2050No
New Forest District Council89%NoNo targetNov. 6, 2021
East Hertfordshire District Council88%Yes2030No
Mid Sussex District Council88%YesNo targetNo
Suffolk County Council87%Yes2030March 21, 2019
Tewkesbury Borough Council87%Yes2030Oct. 1, 2019
Gloucestershire County Council87%Yes2030May 15, 2019
East Suffolk Council87%Yes2030July 24, 2019
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council86%Yes2025July 18, 2019

These councils grographically border or overlap with Dorset Council. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
South Somerset District Council93%Yes2023May 21, 2019
Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole Borough Council93%Yes2030July 16, 2019
Somerset County Council92%Yes2030Feb. 20, 2019
Wiltshire Council90%Yes2030Feb. 26, 2019
New Forest District Council88%NoNo targetNov. 6, 2021
East Devon District Council85%Yes2040July 24, 2019
Devon County Council83%Yes2030Feb. 21, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Dorset Council in terms of the proportion of their population living in high deprivation, medium deprivation, and low deprivation neighbourhoods. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Malvern Hills District Council98%Yes2030July 23, 2019
Wychavon District Council95%Yes2050No
Teignbridge District Council93%Yes2025April 18, 2019
Braintree District Council92%Yes2030July 22, 2019
North Warwickshire Borough Council91%No2030Oct. 22, 2019
Chichester District Council90%Yes2025July 9, 2019
Lewes District Council90%Yes2030July 15, 2019
Rugby Borough Council90%Yes2030July 18, 2019
Babergh District Council89%Yes2030July 23, 2019
Epping Forest District Council88%Yes2030Sept. 19, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Dorset Council in terms of the proportion of their population living in urban, rural, and highly rural neighbourhoods. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Wealden District Council94%Yes2050July 24, 2019
Wiltshire Council94%Yes2030Feb. 26, 2019
Monmouthshire County Council94%Yes2030May 16, 2019
Sedgemoor District Council94%Yes2030March 20, 2019
Bassetlaw District Council93%NoNo targetNo
Lincolnshire County Council92%Yes2050No
Mid and East Antrim Borough Council92%NoNo targetSept. 9, 2019
Devon County Council92%Yes2030Feb. 21, 2019
South Oxfordshire District Council89%Yes2025April 11, 2019
Somerset County Council89%Yes2030Feb. 20, 2019

Powers & Responsibilities

Dorset Council is a Unitary Authority, with powers over:

Council buildings and staff

Climate actions might include:

  • making council offices more energy efficient
  • incentivising ‘Active Travel’ or public transport use among employees
  • providing carbon literacy training for employees
    Environmental health

    Climate actions might include:

    • reducing industrial emissions through air quality enforcement
    • bringing up insulation and energy efficiency standards through enforcement of the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) and Decent Homes Standard 2000. for cold and damp conditions in private rental and social housing

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Passenger transport

    Climate actions might include:

    • encouraging bus and private hire operators to use low-emission vehicles, through licensing requirements or Clean Air Zones
    • incentivising bus use by improving routes, timetables, and ticket prices through ‘Enhanced Partnerships’ with operators
    • proposing to central government the development of light rail / tram networks that integrate, rather than compete, with other modes of transport in the area

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Planning and building control

    Climate actions might include:

    • imposing reasonable requirements that new developments comply with energy efficiency standards and get a proportion of their energy from local, renewable sources (Planning and Energy Act, 2008)
    • incorporating additional energy performance standards into their Local Plan, for new works that require planning permission
    • using Area Action Plans to guide development proposals towards lower carbon emissions or more cycling and walking routes, for example
    • enforcing legislation that requires private rental properties to be of Energy Efficiency Rating E or above (Energy Efficiency Regulations, 2015)
    • funding energy efficiency improvements on existing homes, through initiatives such as Green Homes Grants

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Schools and libraries

    Climate actions might include:

    • reducing the carbon footprint of civic buildings through better insulation and renewable energy use
    • incentivising ‘Active Travel’ or public transport use among employees
    • providing carbon literacy training for employees
    • encouraging eco-clubs at schools
    • using school land to plant trees and hedgerows, or to grow food

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Social housing

    Climate actions might include:

    • prioritising energy efficiency when building new council-operated social housing schemes – for example, through the Passivhaus standard
    • enabling housing associations to improve the energy efficiency of their housing stock, through loans from the local authority

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Spending, procuring, and investing

    Climate actions might include:

    • embedding carbon impact assessment as part of the council’s budgeting and financial accountability process
    • utilising Public Works Loan Board loans or the Business Rates Retention Scheme to invest in emissions-reducing capital projects that otherwise wouldn’t get funded
    • specifying low carbon equipment and practices when procuring for relevant services from suppliers
    • prioritising positive environmental impacts during procurement, through the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012
    Transport planning

    Climate actions might include:

    • incentivising ‘Active Travel’ like walking and cycling by creating or widening footways and cycleways
    • incentivising Electric Vehicle use by assigning street space to EV charging
    • disincentivising the use of fossil fuel cars through congestion charging,low-traffic neighbourhoods, or the reduction of parking space

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Waste collection and disposal

    Climate actions might include:

    • establishing ‘Joint Waste Solutions’ with neighbouring councils, to get more value out of waste, recycling, and street cleaning contracts
    • running marketing campaigns to encourage residential recycling, reuse, and waste minimisation

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Read more about English local authority powers in the UK100 Power Shift report.

    More about this council

    dorsetcouncil.gov.uk
    Dorset Council’s official homepage.
    @dorsetforyou
    Dorset Council’s Twitter account.
    Tyndall Centre Carbon Budget report
    Check Dorset Council’s ‘carbon budget’ – their share towards meeting the UK’s Paris agreement targets.
    Friends of the Earth ‘Near You’ tool
    Discover climate groups in this area, data about Dorset Council’s climate performance, and actions you can take.

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