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Does Frome have the largest carbon footprint in the district?

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FROME has been labelled as having the largest carbon footprint of any town  or city in Mendip, according to a report by the district council.

However, Frome Town Council has highlighted that the figure has been calculated based solely on population size – Frome has the largest population in Mendip of nearly 28,000 – and does not take into account the recent  and ongoing work of the town to decrease its carbon emissions.

The carbon emissions estimates in the report – the first of its kind ever conducted in the district – have been produced to provide each Mendip settlement, including Frome, with a starting point, to assist in their carbon reduction and action planning.

In response, the town council has pledged to work closely with the district council to meet these ‘urgent targets’. But they have also drawn attention to the ‘huge role’ that the district council – who set a target of making Mendip carbon neutral by 2030 – has in helping to reduce carbon emissions across the region.

Anna Francis, resilience manager for Frome Town Council told Frome Times, “As the biggest town in Mendip, it’s unsurprising that the calculations show Frome has the biggest impact. The analysis doesn’t currently take into account local actions to address these impacts however. 

“For example, the increasing number of households and businesses installing solar through the solar streets programme or other projects that reduce carbon such as SHARE A Library of Things and Frome’s community fridge. The report is however really useful in highlighting the scale and speed of action needed.

“The town council is working closely with Mendip to ensure closer partnership working. Whilst Frome is increasingly recognised as leading the way on what town councils can do to address climate impact locally, Mendip has a huge role to play, for example, specifying that all new homes should be net zero carbon, installing electric charge points in their car parks and ensuring that all of their buildings and land are generating clean community owned energy where possible. 

“Working closely together to meet these urgent targets will improve quality of life, reduce air pollution and energy costs for residents in Frome and across the district.”

The carbon emissions report published last week assesses the Mendip area’s carbon footprint, identifies key sources of emissions, and sets out clear priorities for action and measuring progress. 

The district council says, “It represents a starting point in the council’s journey to carbon neutrality, by providing a baseline for future emissions-reduction planning through our district and communities.”

Portfolio holder for strategic policy and climate change for Mendip District Council, cllr Tom Ronan, added, “Environmental concerns must continue to be the first priority for national and local government.

“Establishing a picture of our current emissions in Mendip is key to understanding the best approach to becoming carbon neutral. This report will inform future targets for climate action.”

You can read Mendip District Council’s report in full here: www.mendip.gov.uk/article/8615/Mendip-publish-first-ever-carbon -emissions-report

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