Council to focus on economic recovery and climate change

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Wealden District Council has updated its Corporate Plan to focus on post Covid economic recovery and the all-embracing need to combat climate change.

Council Leader Bob Standley said:

Since drawing up this Corporate Plan in 2019 we have faced the largest national peacetime emergency for over a century.

We have also responded the climate emergency by drawing up an action plan with the clear ambition to make both this Council, and the District, carbon neutral by 2050 – at the latest.

To provide our most effective response, a greater strategic emphasis has been needed. We have re-focussed the 2019-23 Corporate Plan on eight objectives for the next two years: To ensure that Wealden is Carbon Zero by 2050 at the latest, and to work with partners to regenerate our diverse market towns, creating jobs and attracting investment.

Wealden District Council Leader Cllr Bob Standley

The Plan sets out the strategic direction and explains how they intend to deliver their vision. The eight objectives listed in the Corporate Mid-term Update are:

  • Ensure that Wealden is Carbon Zero by 2050 at the latest.
  • Work with partners to regenerate our diverse market towns, creating jobs and attracting investment.
  • Support our local businesses, tourism sector and entrepreneurs to achieve a locally sustainable economy.
  • Protect and enhance Wealden’s unique natural environment and heritage.
  • Ensure development meets future needs, with associated investment in infrastructure.
  • Promote a better quality of life for Wealden people through activities that improve health, resilience and well-being.
  • Improve access to essential services for all our communities.
  • Generate ongoing sources of income to reinvest in local priorities and optimise funding from external sources.

Other actions outlined in the 2019-23 Corporate Plan will be included in comprehensive service plans across the organisation.

As part of its climate Emergency Action Plan, the Council is looking to reduce the energy demand of its buildings, as well as exploring their potential for generating and storing renewable energy. It is also looking at retrofitting low carbon heating systems across the District. A pilot scheme has been launched to encourage businesses on a Hailsham industrial estate to install renewable technologies to reduce carbon emissions. Other green initiatives, including the promotion of electric vehicle charge points and green wildlife corridors, are linked to Wealden’s emerging Local Plan which is expected to be adopted by the end of 2023.

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