Lickey and Blackwell Parish Council (LBPC) recognises its activities can have an impact on the environment and that it has responsibilities to minimise adverse and maximise positive impacts.

 Approved and adopted by the Parish Council – Monday 16 November 2020

Aims

In all its activities the Parish Council will aim to make a positive contribution to protecting and enhancing the local environment.

 To achieve this LBPC will aim to meet relevant environmental legislation and regulations1.

  1. Regularly update and improve our policies and practices.

Action plan:

1.1 LBPC will update and improve its policies based on the recommendation of National Association of Local Councils (NALC)2.

1.2 Consider the research & policies of Friends of the Earth3, The Tree Council4 and WRAP5.

  1. Use of Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP)6 and Village Design Statement7 to guide and influence the District Council planning decisions.

Action plan:

2.1 Promote awareness of our NDP to all appropriate parties via the PC website8 and Newsletters.

2.2 Utilise NDP policies in our comments on planning applications and encouraging our District Councillors to do the same.

2.3 Periodically update the NDP to reflect changes in local needs and in planning regulations.

  1. Prepare, implement and monitor environmental action plan for our PC area.
    • LBPC will follow the guidelines set out by the UK Government Environmental Impact Assessment9.
  1. Wherever possible minimise the consumption of all resources used in its operation and consider the lifecycle impact of purchases.

Action plan:

4.1 Reduce, recycle and reuse materials such as single use plastics.

4.2 Printing will be minimised and where possible FSC paper will be used, which is a totally recyclable, biodegradable and acid-free material.

4.3 To work with Bromsgrove District Council (BDC) and Worcestershire County Council (WCC) to minimise waste going to landfill or incineration by recycling and composting where possible.

4.4 Use and promote amongst residents and planners energy conservation technology including, low energy light bulbs and low water toilets.

4.5 Promote best practice of residents and contractors to use eco-friendly products.

  1. To work towards the parish being Net Carbon Neutral.

Action Plan:

5.1 Encourage the use of efficient energy usage and reduce harmful emissions where possible.

5.2 Consider meeting remotely where appropriate to reduce councillor’s car use and save energy/costs.

5.3 The PC will work with BDC and WCC towards 100% LED bulbs for street lighting and will consider proposing that they be turned off at midnight following consultation with residents. This would save energy, improve wildlife habitats and provide dark skies.

5.4 The planting of trees to act as carbon sinks will help to mitigate the emissions created by M42 motorway traffic.

5.5 To use its statutory consultee status to give preference to planning applications for buildings which are low carbon and energy efficient. It will support houses, which aspire to Passivhaus standard i.e. carbon neutral. It will object to buildings, which appreciably increase the area’s carbon footprint.

5.6 To request the planning applications include vehicle-recharging points as a condition of acceptance.

5.7 Solar, geothermal and wind powered energy schemes will be encouraged and the PC will disseminate information about grants for home energy efficiency improvements.

  1. Support initiatives that encourage sustainable transport.

Action plan:

6.1 The PC encourages the provision of an efficient and well-used public transport service and will work with county and district councillors to this end and will ensure our bus shelters are well maintained. It looks forward to the introduction of electric buses in this area.

6.2 We shall continue to maintain our parish footpaths, which provide safe walking routes through our parish with the help of our parish footpath officer. Our parish walks booklets are downloadable from the LBPC website10. Where needed we shall support the provision of green paths where no footway exists. We support the national initiative to prohibit inappropriate car parking on footways.

  1. Respect and protect natural resources through conservation and good management.

Action plan:

7.1 To preserve the Green Belt between developments.

7.2 Increase tree cover and replace trees lost to disease or development and follow the guidelines of the Tree Charter developed by the Woodland Trust. Implement a parish tree-planting scheme and work with WCC to plant trees on county owned land e.g. verges to act as a carbon sink.

7.3 Maintain a register of TPO trees and report any removal of registered trees.

7.4 Work with local residents to plant community woodland and orchards if land available.

7.5 Manage public land for wildlife and biodiversity by managing verges for wildflowers. Encourage pollinators by planting bee and butterfly friendly plants. The churchyard extension in Lickey will continue to be managed as a Living Cemetery.

7.6 Support and encourage residents and other local landowners to manage their land for wildlife diversity. The Eco-friendly category in the annual Best Front Garden competition just does that.

7.7 To liaise with appropriate authorities to manage water courses to avoid localised flooding.

7.8 To show future preference to local contractors providing they meet best environmental practice thus minimising travel miles and supporting the local economy.

  1. Will inform residents of appropriate green initiatives.

Action plan:

8.1 To appoint an Environment Champion, who will work with the council to achieve the aims of this environment policy.

8.2 To inform residents of appropriate green initiatives by organising Eco Days and other public meetings, bringing together speakers on energy efficient housing, climate friendly transport, climate change initiatives and local green enterprises.

8.3 Shall work to achieve the aims of the Bromsgrove District Climate Change Action Plan.

Notes, Reference and Further reading

  1. https://www.gov.uk/topic/environmental-management/assessing-environmental-impact
  2. https://www.nalc.gov.uk/publications
  3. https://friendsofearth.uk
  4. https://treecouncil.org.uk
  5. wrap.org.uk
  6. https://www.lickeyandblackwellpc.org/neighbourhood-plan/
  7. https://www.lickeyandblackwellpc.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/LB-Village-Design-Stmt.pdf
  8. lickeyandblackwellpc.org
  9. https://www.gov.uk/guidance/environmental-impact-assessment
  10. https://www.lickeyandblackwellpc.org/documents/

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