Have your say on tackling climate change in Three Rivers

29th October 2020

Residents and businesses in Three Rivers are being urged to have their say on the district’s plans for tackling climate change. 

In 2019 Three Rivers District Council declared a climate emergency, committing to making its own operations carbon neutral by 2030 and to helping the district achieve the government target of net zero carbon by 2050.

The council’s newly published draft Climate Change Strategy sets out the council’s plans for reaching these targets and people can have their say on it by taking part in an online survey. 

The main aims of the strategy are:

  • To inspire everyone in Three Rivers to work together to achieve carbon neutrality and adopt sustainable choices and lifestyles.
  • Minimise carbon dioxide emissions through decentralised, or off-grid, renewable energy sources. 
  • To achieve the highest standards of sustainable design and construction in new buildings.
  • Improve energy efficiency in existing industrial, commercial and domestic buildings.
  • Ensure that all development results in an increase in natural habitat to offset greenhouse gas emissions.
  • To reduce the amount of waste produced and maximise reuse and recycling.
  • Reduce water consumption and prevent contamination of our river network.
  • Mitigate increasing flooding risk with sustainable drainage systems. 
  • To reduce carbon fuel reliance and improve local air quality by promoting public transport and encouraging walking and cycling. 

Cllr Phil Williams, the council’s Lead Member for Environmental Services and Sustainability, said: “We are already one of the greenest councils in the country. But there is a lot more work to be done to help us reach our targets and we cannot do it alone. That’s why we need residents, voluntary organisations, and local businesses to get involved and have their say on this strategy. 

“We want to engage the community to create healthier lifestyles, enhance biodiversity and grow our local economy.” 

The draft strategy can be downloaded here: 

TRDC Climate Change Strategy for consultation 2020 (pdf)

The survey is available here:

TRDC Climate Change Strategy SURVEY

The survey closes at midday on Monday 30th November 2020 and the responses will go to Three Rivers District Council’s Policy and Resources Committee for consideration before a final strategy is published.

Since 2015, the council has been working towards the aims and objectives of its Green Expectations Strategy, which has resulted in significant achievements within the council’s own operations:

  • The council’s offices, Three Rivers House, uses 100% green energy derived from the ground source heat pump and solar PV.
  • Watersmeet Theatre, Three Rivers House and the Basing Bowl Pavilions all have solar photovoltaic arrays.
  • Planted and manage an extensive area of new woodland at Chorleywood House
  • TRDC took ownership of the Withy Beds at Rickmansworth to preserve one of the few remaining wetland areas in Hertfordshire.
  • At Bishops Woods TRDC restored and manage an area of fast diminishing heathland
  • LED Lights used in Three Rivers House and the two leisure centres.
  • Three Rivers has four Green Flag awards for the quality of its parks and green spaces.
  • Recycling rates are the highest in Hertfordshire and third highest nationally at 63% (2018/19).
  • Single use plastics have been removed from all council operations.
  • The walking and cycling strategy has helped develop and create local networks together with a cycle hub at Leavesden Park, new high-density bike parks at local rail stations and cycle parking at every retail centre. 
  • Better Buses Programme has enabled 80,000 bus trips around the district, saving 58% carbon for each trip.

Electric Vehicle Charge Points have been installed for the use of visitors and residents in local car parks, with Three Rivers District having the highest number of public charge points in Hertfordshire.