A BLUEPRINT setting out how the borough council plans to tackle climate change in the area has been given the green light.

Councillors on Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council’s cabinet approved the latest Climate Change Strategy which sets out how the borough plans to lower carbon dioxide emissions across Basingstoke and Deane.

The document includes three key pledges made by the borough council, a detailed action plan of how they will reduce emissions at their operational buildings, and the steps they will take to highlight climate change to residents and local businesses.

The local authority has achieved a 21 per cent reduction in carbon dioxide emissions in their operational buildings and services between 2007 and 2012 after they adopted the first Climate Change Strategy in 2008.

Steps that have been taken to improve emission levels include the installation of new boilers in the Parklands building at the Civic Offices, in London Road, reduced flights to Europe for European Union-funded projects, and reduced fuel consumption for street cleaning, park maintenance and waste and recycling collections.

And now a target of a further 15 per cent reduction from 2012 to 2016 has been set in addition to a plan to match a UK target to reduce emissions by 34 per cent by 2020 and an 80 per cent reduction by 2050.

In preparation for the strategy, a draft of the blueprint was the subject of a five-week public consultation period which saw environmental groups such as Greening Chineham, Natural Basingstoke and Transition Network submit detailed comments.