MK is stepping up to tackle climate change say local people 

Friday 5 November 2021

 

FINAL - MK survey

As communities react to national plans to counter global warming announced at COP26, new research finds three quarters of local people believe Milton Keynes is taking positive steps to tackle climate change.

75% of just under 1,000 local people surveyed on behalf of MK Council believe MK’s leaders, communities and individuals are actively working towards Milton Keynes becoming a sustainable city, with 92% saying they are worried about climate change and its impacts.

The survey found most people think renewable energy schemes such as solar panels, heat pumps and biomass boilers would be the most effective way to lower MK’s total carbon footprint, followed by being able to buy more locally grown food.  More than three quarters of residents would like all new build homes to come pre-fitted with solar panels.

MK Council asked how it could best help people make more sustainable choices.  The top answer, from a third of those surveyed, was for the Council to use its influence with business, government, and other partners to make new green schemes affordable.  Around a fifth wanted more zero carbon buildings and low carbon public transport options in MK.

When asked to rank what they could do more or less of personally, most people said they would try to produce less waste, recycle more, and cut car journeys.

Cllr Jennifer Wilson-Marklew, Cabinet Member for Climate Action and Sustainability said: “Our ambition is for Milton Keynes Council to be carbon neutral by 2030 and for Milton Keynes to become one of the world’s leading sustainable cities.

“There’s lots we’re already doing as a Council, and it’s really encouraging to see so many people have climate change and carbon reduction on their personal agenda too.  We’re all in this together.

“If you can, this is the time to make more sustainable choices, whether that’s switching off lights when you leave a room, eating less meat or walking short journeys.  Upgrading to better home insulation or greener power isn’t affordable for everyone yet, but we’ll keep lobbying and unlocking funding where we can, to bring this into reach for more people.”

Some ways Milton Keynes Council is working to tackle climate change:

  • By only approving carbon neutral new development. 

  • Building and retrofitting zero carbon council homes with solar panels, green insulation and more sustainable heating. 

  • Changing MK’s 58,000 streetlights to low energy versions. 

  • Investing in public electric vehicle charging points, including more in residential areas.  

  • Bringing new sustainable investment into MK, such as securing 60 new electric buses for MK as announced last week. 

  • Producing energy from MK’s waste – used in part to power the electric buses and in time its street cleaning and landscaping vehicles too. 

  • Sharing £500,000 with MK firms who are use greener ways to recover after the pandemic.  

  • Planting more trees and creating wildflower verges.

On Wednesday 10 November a free conference supported by MK Council and partners will bring together sustainability experts to share their learning and ideas on tackling climate change locally.

The conference will run from 10am – 5pm in the city centre with limited tickets available to attend in person and unlimited availability for anyone to join online.

You can find the full programme and sign up for free tickets at sustainablemk.city.