2015-05-20   facebook twitter rss

National Park Staff Battling Climate Change

Yorkshire Dales National Park Authority staff are celebrating a massive boost to their work in combatting climate change.

Latest figures show the Authority has cut its carbon emissions by a staggering two-thirds (66 per cent) in the last nine years.

And in the last financial year alone there was a reduction of nearly 15 per cent on 2013/14.

On a grander scale, the Authority has been working hard with partners to help local people and businesses to reduce their carbon emissions and increase carbon capture.

Halton Gill

Halton Gill
© Copyright Chris Eccleston
and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence

National Park Authority Chairman Peter Charlesworth said:
“These latest figures are a fantastic piece of news. We won the national Low Carbon Council of the Year award in 2012 and these results clearly show that we are not resting on our laurels.

“Over the nine-year period, the reduction works out at a drop in carbon dioxide emissions for the Authority from 906 tonnes to 310 tonnes. It also represents a saving of £145,000 a year, which, in the current climate of cuts to our budget, is very good news.

“The biggest single change we have made the last financial year has been the installation of a biomass (wood chip) boiler in the Dales Countryside Museum in Hawes to replace an oil-based heating system.

“Climate change is one of the biggest threats facing the National Park in the future and we must do all we can as organisations and as individuals to help lessen its impact on this beautiful but incredibly fragile landscape.”

Since 2006, the Authority and its partners the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust and the Forestry Commission have funded the planting of 750,000 native broadleaf trees – equivalent to planting roughly nine trees an hour, 24 hours a day, for the past nine years!

The Authority has also supported a number of green energy projects across the National Park, including funding feasibility studies or grant-funding the installation of three hydro-electricity schemes at Halton Gill, Linton and Bainbridge that, collectively, generate enough electricity to power 170 houses

The YDNPA was also one of the founding partners and funders of the Yorkshire Peat Partnership, one of the largest environmental recovery schemes in Europe to restore peatbogs, which capture carbon dioxide. So far, restoration work has been completed on more than 13,000 hectares of eroded peatbog – equivalent to 95 times the size of London’s Hyde Park.

Other practical steps taken by the YDNPA that have contributed to the carbon savings over the years include:

  • installation of a biomass boiler, a ground source heat pump and solar panels at Authority offices

  • heat-saving measures like better insulation and double glazing

  • using technology to reduce power used by computers

  • introducing smarter travel – greener fleet of leased vehicles, car sharing, planning multiple meetings for journeys, holding meetings in one place.

YDNPA

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