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How is Three Rivers District Council tackling the Climate Emergency?

Three Rivers declared a climate emergency in April 2019.

Three Rivers Annual Council approved the Climate Change Strategy on the 25 May 2021.

The council's Climate Emergency and Sustainability Strategy sets out how the council can improve and lead by example in our own operations. It also sets out how we will work with and assist the residents, businesses, and other stakeholders in our area to reduce their impact on the environment, improve sustainability and also adapt to and build resilience to a changing climate.

We have created an online booklet in partnership with Affinity Water, Watford and Three Rivers Friends of the Earth and Sustainable Three Rivers to help residents live more sustainably and outline what we are doing to tackle a range of climate issues. 

Three Rivers District Council 2017-2018 Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report (pdf)

Climate Emergency and Sustainability Strategy Supplementary Document (pdf)

What has the council done so far?

  • Purchased and restored the Withey Beds – one of few remaining wetland habitats in Hertfordshire.
  • Single-use plastics have been significantly reduced across Council operations.
  • As active members of the Hertfordshire Refill Scheme, we have over 20 Refill stations around the district to make it easier to refill on the go.
  • As an active member of WasteAware (the campaign branch of the Hertfordshire Waste Partnership), we run public awareness campaigns throughout the year, work to make waste collection across the district more consistent, and lobby waste producers and policymakers.
  • We separate all waste from our public litter bins for recycling.
  • We convert the District’s food waste into electricity and fertiliser at a local Anaerobic Digestion plant.
  • We process garden waste products in to compost and have an annual compost giveaway for residents.
  • The local walking and cycling strategy has helped develop and create safe, efficient and accessible transport networks in the District to encourage sustainable transport.
  • The Better Buses Programme provides essential local bus services which up to 2020 had replaced nearly 80,000 car journeys annually (saving an estimated 40% of carbon emissions with the same journeys made by a small car).

 Since 2020 we have:

  • Secured Green Homes Grant funding to alleviate fuel poverty by improving energy efficiency in over 100 dwellings across the District.
  • Helped residents recycle 64.1% of their waste – the highest proportion of waste recycled, composted or reused in England (2019/20).
  • Developed a comprehensive county-wide Water Sustainability Action Plan in collaboration with all key water-related stakeholders to ensure sustainable water management.
  • Worked to enhance natural habitats across the District; Leavesden Country Park was awarded a national Bees’ Needs Champion Award by DEFRA for creating pollinator-friendly environments which attract and nurture local bee populations.
  • Facilitated the development of local climate and environmental action groups to advance community-led sustainability initiatives, in collaboration with Friends of the Earth Watford and Three Rivers Groups.
  • Appointed two dedicated officers responsible for the development and implementation of the Strategy and Action Plan for the Council’s own operations and the District.

Find out more about ways you can help fight the climate crisis here