Net zero and climate mitigation

To reduce the levels of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, the council has undertaken a number of projects aimed at the whole city’s emissions as well as its own direct emissions. The full action plan has a detailed list (see appendix 1 on item 9), but some significant actions are listed below.

Reducing Birmingham City Council’s emissions:

  • Birmingham District Energy Company (BDEC) - a company operating an award winning, low carbon heating network in Birmingham which is owned and operated by EQUANS through a working partnership with Birmingham City Council, Aston University, and Birmingham Children’s Hospital. BDEC supplies low carbon, low-cost energy to major energy consumers across the city centre and has ambitions to decarbonise in line with the council's net zero target.
  • 3 Cities Retrofit Programme - an initiative to develop an integrated retrofit programme across Birmingham, Wolverhampton, and Coventry, which reflects the diversity of needs and housing portfolios of each city. Roughly 35% of the region's emissions come from heating and so the 3 cities are combining efforts to accelerate retrofit activities across social homes, beginning with a pilot scheme of 300 homes in East Birmingham.
  • Birmingham Municipal Housing Trust (BMHT) - the council's housebuilding arm which develops affordable social housing. BMHT has introduced new building specifications which include energy and water saving measures for new developments. Additionally, BMHT are exploring options for using more sustainable construction methods to reduce the impact on the environment.
  • Hydrogen Bus Scheme - working with National Express, Birmingham City Council has secured funding to expand the hydrogen bus fleet from 20 to 142 buses which will operate on the low carbon fuel source, making it the largest hydrogen bus fleet in Europe.
  • Electric Bin Lorry Trial - an electric bin lorry has carried out a trial within the city to explore how the refuse fleet can be made emissions free. The trial ended in August 2022; lessons learned will be applied.

Reducing Birmingham’s emissions:

  • Birmingham Transport Plan 2031 - a bold approach to reducing transport emissions by reallocating road space, transforming the city centre, promoting active travel, and managing demand through parking. Now in its delivery phase, Birmingham transport plan sets out to radically transition the city towards sustainable forms of transport.
  • Electric Vehicle Charging Strategy – a strategy to deliver a comprehensive public electric vehicle charging network across Birmingham. This network aims to be accessible to all of Birmingham’s residents, serving the needs of all key user groups within the city, including taxis, car clubs, commercial fleets, and residents without off-street parking.
  • Birmingham Clean Air Strategy - a recently implemented strategy which aims to improve air quality in the city and introduce of a Clean Air Zone. Since the introduction of the Clean Air Zone in June 2021, monitoring has shown that the level of harmful air pollutants has fallen, delivering health and environmental benefits for residents of Birmingham.
  • Birmingham Food Systems Strategy – an ambitious eight-year approach to creating a food system and economy where food choices are affordable, nutritious and desirable for all citizens, reducing the environmental impact of our food system in Birmingham.

Page last updated: 24 June 2024

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