The impacts of climate change are being felt around the world, including here in the Falkirk District. The climate will continue to change in years to come due to greenhouse gasses which have been emitted in previous years and decades and, also, due to greenhouse gases that continue to be emitted today. However, the science tells us that it is not too late to limit how much the climate changes in future and to avoid the worst possible impacts if big changes are made to how we do things.
What is Falkirk Council doing about climate change?
Falkirk Council is committed to playing a part in minimising future climate change by:
- Working towards a target of Net Zero greenhouse gas emissions on our organisational vehicle fuel and building energy use by 2030 in line with our Climate Emergency declaration.
- Taking action to support the Scottish Government's target to achieve Net Zero by 2045.
As well as working to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, we aim to ensure that Council services and all aspects of life in the Falkirk District are as resilient as possible to the impacts of climate change, such as increased risk of flooding and heatwaves, in line with Scotland's Climate Change Adaptation Programme.
How we deliver on climate change is shaped by the need to deliver on all the other important things that we are required and expected to do as a Local Authority. This means that while the changes that we need to make to address climate change are often big and challenging, we are working to ensure that they make Falkirk District a happier, healthier, fairer, and more prosperous place to be.
- Falkirk Council will publish a Climate Change Strategy which sets out our approach to climate action in the Falkirk area. This strategy is expected March 2023.
- You can find details of our carbon footprint, actions we are taking and actions we are planning to take in our annual 'Public Bodies Climate Change Reports'.
- You can find more information on the latest from Falkirk Council in news articles related to climate change.
- See the Publications tab to view our key policies and resources relating to climate change.
What can I do to help to tackle climate change?
What you can do personally depends on your own circumstances. What works for one person may not work for someone else, but everyone can do something. Change can sometimes be challenging but it can also be enjoyable and beneficial in ways such as saving money, getting healthier, developing new hobbies and making friends. Research also shows that if you feel anxious about climate change, taking action is one of the best ways to feel motivated, especially when this involves working with others.
A good place to start is identifying changes that you could make which work for you by looking at your 'carbon footprint' or ecological footprint' using the footprint calculator online tool. Your individual actions have wider impacts, such as inspiring others around you to follow suit, and supporting organisations and projects which make a difference.
Advice and financial support for things that you can do to help to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and save you money is available from Home Energy Scotland. You can also make a difference in the influence you have in your work, community, and personal life. Zero Waste Scotland provide free Green Champion Training to help you to help your work or any voluntary organisations you are a member of take collective action on climate change.
The Falkirk District is home to some fantastic organisations which are working to tackle climate change and improve our local area. You can find out more about some of these organisations, what they can do to help you, and what you can do to support them by browsing our Sustainable Falkirk Map. If you are an owner or CEO of an organisation and would like it to be included on this map please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
"Very few of us are squeaky clean in carbon terms. You don't have to become so overnight, but most of us do need to make serious changes over the next few years. It's important to keep moving in the right direction and enjoy the process of cutting carbon out of our lives. Don't beat yourself up, but don't let yourself off the hook either."
Mike Berners-Lee - author of 'There is No Planet B'
How can I prepare for the impacts of climate change?
See our Resilience Planning advice on preparing for and responding to severe weather and flooding.
Also see Adaptation Scotland's website for advice and support for people and organisations to adapt to the changing climate.
The publications below relate specifically to the Council's work regarding climate change:
Local Climate Impacts Profiles
These outline how we managed the impacts of weather in delivering services and how we expected this to change as the climate changes.
- Local Climate Impacts Profile (2020)