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Scottish Borders Council

Declarations & pledges

Climate emergency declaration

This council declared a climate emergency on Sept. 5, 2020.

Council only pledge for 2045

“This route map sets out the scope of our ambition as a Council to reach the Scottish Government target of net zero by 2045 and opportunities for action.”

Climate documents

Last update: March 16, 2022

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

SectionScottish Borders CouncilAverage single tier council
Total score59%50%
Section 1 Governance, development and funding
10/21
10.3/21
Section 2 Mitigation and adaptation
14/18
9.0/18
Section 3 Commitment and integration
4/7
4.1/7
Section 4 Community, engagement and communications
5/9
5.1/9
Section 5 Measuring and setting emissions targets
3/5
2.9/5
Section 6 Co-benefits
3/4
2.2/4
Section 7 Diversity and inclusion
2/5
0.9/5
Section 8 Education, skills and training
3/5
2.3/5
Section 9 Ecological emergency
3/4
2.1/4

Emissions reduction projects

Local authorities in Scotland are required to publish yearly data on their compliance with their climate change duties – including the emissions reduction projects they are undertaking.

See all of Scottish Borders Council’s projects

11

Projects

1.4 ktCO2 per year

Total annual emissions savings

£3,321,537

Total capital cost

Emissions data

610.6 ktCO2

Total 2020 emissions

5.3 tCO2

per person

0.1 ktCO2

per km2

33%

Domestic

32%

Transport

15%

Agriculture

14%

Industry

4%

Commercial

3%

Public Sector

Data from the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy “subset dataset”, representing carbon dioxide emissions within the scope of influence of local authorities.

These councils are the most similar to Scottish Borders 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
Dumfries and Galloway Council81%Yes2025June 27, 2019
Craven District Council77%No2030Aug. 6, 2019
Aberdeenshire Council76%No2045No
Argyll and Bute Council74%Yes2045No
The Highland Council74%No2025May 9, 2019
Richmondshire District Council73%Yes2030July 23, 2019
East Ayrshire Council73%No2030No
Powys County Council73%No2030July 30, 2020
South Lakeland District Council73%Yes2030Feb. 26, 2019
Isle of Anglesey County Council72%Yes2030Sept. 8, 2020

These councils are the most similar to Scottish Borders 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
Carmarthenshire County Council92%Yes2030Feb. 20, 2019
Dumfries and Galloway Council83%Yes2025June 27, 2019
Isle of Anglesey County Council81%Yes2030Sept. 8, 2020
Ceredigion County Council75%Yes2030March 5, 2020
Craven District Council74%No2030Aug. 6, 2019
Powys County Council74%No2030July 30, 2020
Northumberland Council73%Yes2030June 11, 2019
East Ayrshire Council72%No2030No
Aberdeenshire Council68%No2045No
Argyll and Bute Council68%Yes2045No
Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
East Lothian Council93%No2045Aug. 27, 2019
Midlothian Council93%No2030Dec. 17, 2019
City of Edinburgh Council90%Yes2030Feb. 7, 2019
Carlisle City Council89%No2030March 5, 2019
Fife Council87%Yes2045Sept. 26, 2019
Northumberland Council87%Yes2030June 11, 2019
West Lothian Council87%NoNo targetSept. 24, 2019
South Lanarkshire Council84%NoNo targetSept. 25, 2019
Dundee City Council84%Yes2045June 24, 2019
Allerdale Borough Council83%Yes2030Sept. 25, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Scottish Borders 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
East Lothian Council99%No2045Aug. 27, 2019
High Peak Borough Council98%Yes2030Oct. 15, 2019
Warwickshire County Council98%Yes2030July 25, 2019
South Derbyshire District Council98%Yes2030June 27, 2019
Staffordshire Moorlands District Council96%Yes2030July 10, 2019
Mid Suffolk District Council96%Yes2030July 25, 2019
Fylde Borough Council95%NoNo targetNo
New Forest District Council94%NoNo targetNov. 6, 2021
Staffordshire County Council94%Yes2050July 25, 2019
North Yorkshire County Council94%Yes2030No

These councils are the most similar to Scottish Borders 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
West Devon Borough Council98%Yes2030May 21, 2019
Mid Suffolk District Council98%Yes2030July 25, 2019
Ryedale District Council97%No2050Oct. 10, 2019
Dumfries and Galloway Council94%Yes2025June 27, 2019
Aberdeenshire Council92%No2045No
The Highland Council92%No2025May 9, 2019
Newry, Mourne and Down District Council91%NoNo targetOct. 7, 2019
Perth and Kinross Council91%No2045No
Forest of Dean District Council90%Yes2030Dec. 6, 2018
Derbyshire Dales District Council89%Yes2030May 30, 2019

Powers & Responsibilities

Scottish Borders 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.

    Housing

    Climate actions might include:

    • setting energy standards above building regulations (Planning and Energy Act, 2008)
    • enabling housing associations to improve the energy efficiency of their housing stock through loans
    • where councils operate their own social housing, prioritising energy efficiency – for example, by requiring Passivhaus standard for newly built schemes

    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 local authority powers across the UK, at The Institute for Government.

    More about this council

    scotborders.gov.uk
    Scottish Borders Council’s official homepage.
    @ScotBorders
    Scottish Borders Council’s Twitter account.
    Tyndall Centre Carbon Budget report
    Check Scottish Borders Council’s ‘carbon budget’ – their share towards meeting the UK’s Paris agreement targets.

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    Cite this page

    mySociety, Climate Emergency UK (2022). Climate Action Plan Explorer: Scottish Borders Council. Available at: http://data.climateemergency.uk/councils/scottish-borders-council/ [Accessed 28 Nov 2022].

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