A smart, healthy city – fit for the future

Energy and Climate Change – warmer homes, lower bills

Alongside bolder transport policies, councils around the country are taking a lead in reducing climate change emissions from buildings. This includes tackling energy poverty to provide warmer, more sustainable homes and lower energy bills for households and businesses. York can do far more through the new Local Plan, through the way the Council manages its own land and properties and how it works with city partner organisations – and through the Council becoming a local energy provider.

We will:

  • Set far more ambitious city-wide climate change emission reduction targets including zero carbon by 2030. Provide much better support to the ‘One Planet York’ partnership to bring everyone in the city together to deliver those targets in practice.
  • Require zero carbon or Passivhaus building standards on all new development sites through Supplementary Planning Documents in the Local Plan. Passivhaus provides warm, well-ventilated, affordable to live in homes with very low energy bills
  • Create a ‘Sustainable Development Fund’ to support Passivhaus building standards when developers can prove a need for some additional support.
  • Require all new development under Council control, including York Central, to meet Passivhaus or zero carbon standards irrespective of planning requirements
  • Invest in large scale insulation programmes to improve both council housing and private sector housing, including grants to landlords in return for high standards of property maintenance and management.
  • Bring in annual Carbon Budgets alongside the Council’s financial budget.
  • Build on the experience of companies such as White Rose Energy (set up by Leeds City Council) to work towards a Council Energy Company for York. Council energy companies are generally ‘not-for-profit’ so can provide low tariffs, help people move off expensive pre-payment or Pay As You Go contracts, provide good customer service and energy saving advice and invest in renewables. They also support Community Energy providers such as York Community Energy. Any profits are reinvested in insulation or other measures to save energy.
  • Investigate all the options for developing energy storage facilities in York to maximise the use of renewable energy in the city.

No Fracking!

Green councillors will always oppose fracking for shale gas, which is dirty and dangerous and should have no part in our future energy policy. Green Cllr Lars Kramm secured a clause in the draft North Yorkshire ‘Waste & Minerals Plan’ to require 500m buffer zones between homes and fracking sites to prevent the industrialisation of our countryside.

No fracking demo - Clifford's Tower