The council has released its first Climate Change & Air Quality Strategy 2021 to 2022 Progress Report, which reveals a 70% reduction in the council’s greenhouse gas emissions compared to the year 1990.

According to the report, there has been ‘significant emission savings’ across all aspects of the local authority’s operations in 2021/22 compared to their emissions from 2018/19, including 52% reductions of CO2e emissions from the council’s fleet.

As part of the effort to decarbonise its fleet operations, which accounts for 10% of the local authority’s annual emissions, the council secured more than half a million pounds to upcycle and electrify a refuse collection vehicle.

It also installed two new fleet electric vehicle charging points at its Family Time Services’ operational sites to support the replacement of two diesel multipurpose vehicles (MPVs) with battery electric vehicle alternatives.

Just one of these replacements will result in the following emission savings over the next five years: 6.97 tonnes of CO2e, 62.36 kgs of carbon monoxide, 9.97 kgs of oxides of nitrogen (NOx), and 0.56 kgs of particulate matter.

Veolia, who took on the contract to deliver household waste collections and street cleansing services in the Chiltern, Wycombe and South Bucks areas from September 2020, have also introduced electric vans to their fleet and installed chargers at their local depot.

Commenting on the overall progress report, Gareth Williams, deputy leader and cabinet member for Climate Change and Environment, said: ‘We can all feel immensely satisfied with what has been achieved so far – the introduction of electric vehicles and sizeable solar photovoltaic systems by suppliers to the council, and the impressive number of trees planted by schools and community groups.

‘I look forward to another year of successes, where we can share the benefits of securing a sustainable future.’