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Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council Logo

02/09/2022

Council in line for prestigious business award over efforts to combat climate change

Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council’s commitment to tackling climate change has seen it shortlisted for a coveted business award.

Thanks to the leadership of an all-party working group of elected members, the Council has reached an important milestone in reducing its carbon footprint.

The quality and quantity of work covered in a short period of time has seen the Council reaching the final of the Responsible Business Awards NI - Climate Action Award, for the organisation that best demonstrates a significant commitment and contribution to climate action in Northern Ireland, against a prestigious field.

So what does this commitment to climate change look like in reality?

  • Carbon Literacy training completed for elected members and staff
  • Completion of Carbon Footprint Assessments for all Council premises, providing baseline information to enable improvements to be prioritised
  • Reduction in energy consumption by 11%
  • Reduction in water consumption by 36%
  • Reduction in CO2 emissions by 17%
  • These reductions have resulted in financial saving in one year of almost £260,000
  • Continued focus on building on successes in recycling. Antrim and Newtownabbey is the number 1 Council for recycling in Northern Ireland
  • Commitment to planting 1 million trees – 126,544 trees planted to date
  • The first Council in Northern Ireland to install EcoFill contactless water filling stations along the shorelines to reduce the amount of plastic bottles ending up in the marine environment. Estimated that each station will save approximately 65,000 plastic bottles from going to into the waste stream each year
  • Provision of a School Uniform Recycling Scheme, Muddy Boots sustainable food project, and an Eat Clever programme – focused on healthy eating and food waste reduction
  • Installation of solar bins and bin sensors in key sites to increase capacity and reduce litter
  • Adoption of a sustainable development approach to capital investment in infrastructure
  • Investment in Blue/Green Infrastructure and promotion of active travel to provide opportunities for residents to use safe off road routes for travel and improve connectivity between residential areas, employment hubs and town centres
  • Implementation of a Property Energy Strategy Action Plan
  • Creation of a Capital Fund to facilitate energy efficiency improvements to Council building stock

Mayor of Antrim and Newtownabbey Alderman Stephen Ross said:

“I am pleased to be involved in the all-party group which is focussed on sustainability in all its forms.  It is important that the Council takes the lead in projects and initiatives that reduce our emissions, promote our environmental benefits and drive sustainable processes.”

Evidence of the scale and ambition of the Council’s commitment was seen in its participation in the seminal United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP 26) in Glasgow in 2021. Furthermore, plans are well under way to participate in the upcoming COP 27 in Egypt later this year.