Climate change and sustainability

Solihull Council is committed to combatting climate change and to move to a low carbon economy while ensuring that its environment is protected.

What we are doing

The Council is supporting the UK’s response to the aims of previous COPs. It recognised the gravity of the climate change emergency in a motion at Full Council on 8 October 2019, where a climate emergency declaration was made and a statement of intent to protect the environment was unanimously approved by the Council. The full statement can be read here.

A key element in planning the Borough’s response to the Climate Emergency is Solihull’s Net Zero Action Plan (NZAP). Working with key stakeholders and local residents to develop our NZAP, this vital document sets out the actions that the Council can take to help Solihull meet the region’s ambitious net zero goal by 2041. The NZAP was unanimously agreed at Cabinet in November 2021 and the focus now switches to developing an effective and realistic implementation plan.

The Council also has a net zero ambition for its own operations, that is for the buildings, street lighting and waste service. The actions are set out in the Net Zero Carbon Council Plan 2030.

This year the UK hosted the 26th UN Climate Change Conference of the Parties (COP26) in Glasgow on 31 October - 12 November 2021.

Climate Change Podcasts

During COP26, Councillor Courts, Leader of Solihull Council was joined by a range of special guests to record the Council's first ever podcast series. 'Courts on Climate Change' reflects on the ambitious climate action taking place locally across Solihull.

Joined by host David Gregory-Kumar from BBC Midlands Today, the episodes shine the spotlight on four key areas of climate change action in the borough; education, net zero, energy and future transport.

Listen to the series here. Alternatively download from Spotify or Apple Podcasts.

The roadmap that we are using to guide this work is the Climate Change Prospectus, which sets out the borough’s goals and how it will achieve them. The roadmap is annually reviewed and updated, with achieved actions dropping off and new/emerging issues replacing them. 

Previously called the Green Prospectus, these have been produced since 2016 - progress can be charted across the update reports.

Solihull's Youth Climate Action Survey

In partnership with the Interclimate Network, we recently ran a survey which captured how young people in the borough feel about climate change. With over 550 young people taking part, the findings will help to positively influence the approach to delivering Solihull’s Net Zero Action Plan. 

You can view the key findings or the full report by clicking on the links.

The Council and partners have been working to address climate change and environmental issues, below are a few key activities in support:

  • Planting for the Future - the council has pledged to plant 250,000 trees, and enhance the wider environment, from meadows to green roofs!
  • Solihull Town Centre Energy Network - an innovative project to provide low carbon heat and power from a single energy centre directly into town centre buildings.
  • Wildlife Ways - an ERDF multimillion pound project to invest in the local wildlife and green spaces, and to ensure that residents can access their ‘wildspaces’.
  • Solihull Walking and Cycling Strategy - is the Council’s overall approach to active travel in the borough, supporting the delivery of cycling and walking infrastructure, improve accessibility and ensure future developments cater for cycling and walking.
  • Electric Vehicle Strategy - sets out the Councils approach to ensuring petrol and diesel vehicles in the borough are replaced with low carbon electric vehicles. 
  • Connected Autonomous Vehicles Trial - in a bid to shift to the next generation of mobility solutions, this project is investigating the use of self driving, independent operating vehicles.  
  • Solihull Green Homes Grant - supporting residents to make green improvements to their homes.

Key themes

We have key themes for making the borough more sustainable.

Addressing air pollution across the borough

Working with nature for a greener borough.

Business Support

Businesses across the borough will play a key role in our journey towards net zero emissions. This is why it's so important that they're able to access the support they may need. Click on the boxes to find out more or visit the Solihull for Success website for additional information.

The Solihull Sustainability Visioning Group is helping to make sure Solihull is at the forefront of sustainable business development and help us become a  showcase for environmental business standards as we transition to a low carbon economy.

Led by senior business representatives and stakeholders including the Group's four key priorities are to: 

  • • Raise the standards of waste and energy management practices 
  • • Promote proven 'green technology' that is efficient and cost effective 
  • • Influence regional and local policy making, to ensure sustainability is at the heart of decision making
  • • Conserve and enhance the natural environment, in particular community space

For more information, or to join the group, call 0121 704 6529 or email business@solihull.gov.uk.

A hub for SMEs that are looking to receive support to achieve their decarbonisation and clean growth innovation objectives.

Opportunities include Energy Saving and Business Efficiency Grants of up to £4000 towards the cost of consultancy support from experts. Consultants will provide businesses with a report advising on their low carbon and sustainable product development, business innovation and the development of a sustainability strategy.

For more information visit the GBSLEP Sustainability Hub website.

Committing to the West Midlands Net Zero Business Pledge will help you

  • Reduce your environmental impact and save costs
  • Position your business as a leader in the net zero carbon economy
  • Prepare your business for climate change impacts

You'll also receive the official pledge logo to use in your publicity following the review of your submission. Your efforts will be showcased and celebrated, and you'll gain access to business networks and guidance that can support your pledge commitment.

For more information, or to make your pledge, please see the West Midlands Combined Authority website.

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