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Stevenage Borough Council led the Stevenage Together Partnership in a Climate Change Summit on 12 October to look at innovative ways the council and local organisations are helping tackle the climate emergency and moving towards the target of reaching net zero by 2030.

Stevenage Together is a co-operative partnership of diverse agencies across the town and county who share a vision of Stevenage in the future. The goals of the group are to generate pride in the borough, regenerate the economy and develop communities.

Opening the meeting, Stevenage Borough Council Leader Cllr Sharon Taylor OBE, said:

“The global issue of climate change must be dealt with at a local level. Local leadership is going to be key to taking effective action. This focus comes amid the borough council’s declaration of a climate emergency in 2019 and a new action plan for Stevenage to reach a goal of becoming net zero by 2030. We’ve all learned vital lessons from the pandemic about the power of working together as organisations to deal with a crisis. These lessons must also now apply to our mission to dealing with the climate emergency.”

A number of highly innovative companies presented to the group their own approaches to tackling climate change.

Marcus Vere of Stevenage company BoxBike Delivery explained the concept of cyclologistics; transporting goods by delivery bicycles which the firm has been doing since 2014. Marcus outlined the huge carbon emission reduction potential of cargo bike deliveries. A cargo bike can save circa 9.4 tonnes of emissions per year compared to the use of a diesel van and offer a real alternative to fossil fuelled deliveries by using Stevenage’s 28 miles of segregated cycleways.

Tom Anderson presented on how Grid Edge, a start-up business from Birmingham has developed an artificial intelligence system to use energy data to optimise how and when buildings use energy to reduce their impact on the planet whilst maximizing when renewables feed the grid.

Zayd Al-Jawad, Assistant Director of Planning & Regulation at Stevenage Borough Council presented on the vital steps the council is now working on to address the annual 350 million kilotons of carbon emissions from the town. This starts with better understanding our emissions as a town and how steps to address them must be led by residents and communities. A key role the council will play is to promote alternatives to car use for residents and on retrofitting council homes across the town to cut their emissions and energy use.

To look at how you can make a difference to your emissions to get Stevenage to net zero, visit: Climate Change.