Birmingham’s efforts to cut carbon emissions and slash millions from its energy bills need to be increased by 15 to 20 major schemes if the city is to reach its carbon reduction target by 2026, it has emerged.
The city is seen as a pioneer of green policy with the Birmingham Energy Savers home insulation scheme earning national attention along with several other initiatives.
But James McKay, the city Cabinet member in charge of green policy, has said Birmingham needs to be doing a lot more to cut emissions by 60 per cent by 2026 and 80 per cent by 2050.
Details emerged as the council’s highways contractor Amey revealed it has installed its 10,000th low energy LED street lamp in the city as part of a programme which will ultimately save the council £3 million a year on its street light electricity bill.
Coun McKay also announced the membership of his new Green Commission, including vice chancellor of Aston University Prof Dame Julia King, a member of the Government’s climate change committee, and Jerry Blackett, of the Birmingham Chamber of Commerce.
The commission will be charged with finding out how far Birmingham has come on the green agenda after an audit report revealed the city council has not got an accurate picture of carbon reductions.
It will also develop new policies around energy generation, such as solar panels, turbines and biomass boilers and greener transport.
Coun McKay said: “Birmingham has taken some great strides forward in recent years and the Birmingham Energy Savers programme is a major part of that.
“But if we are to hit our ambitious targets we need another 15 to 20 schemes like that. It is a tall order.
“We can’t take our eye off the ball – this is a great scheme, but we need many more projects of similar stature to meet the Government’s carbon reduction goal of 80 per cent by 2050.”
He said that the commission combines the expertise from all sectors involved in delivering a greener city.