Key priority: improving our environment
- Buckinghamshire has 2,100 miles of publicly maintained carriageway.
- There was a 70% reduction in Buckinghamshire Council’s CO2 emissions and we are comfortably within our carbon budgets.
- 1.6 million country park visitors in 2022/202349.17% of waste is recycled (2022/2023).
- There are 2,146 miles of Public Rights of Way.
- In partnership with operators, bus passenger numbers have recovered to 85% of pre-Covid levels.
Buckinghamshire is a beautiful county, and our stunning natural and historic landscape is valued by all. Over a quarter of our county is within the Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and a third is covered by the Metropolitan Green Belt.
Protection of the county’s beautiful countryside, including areas of outstanding natural beauty and green belt will be achieved through the ‘Brown before Green’ principle. We know we must deliver more homes and associated infrastructure for our growing population. By managing growth sensibly and responsibly (including identifying appropriate surplus public sector property and actively developing this for market, affordable housing and key worker housing), we can protect and enhance our natural environment and the benefits it brings. Aylesbury Garden Town is an exciting example: putting green spaces and natural environments at the heart of future development.
- to address climate change, improve our environment and create economic opportunities for clean growth
- to reduce our county’s environmental impact by promoting sustainability and reducing waste
- to improve air quality and people’s health, by reducing emissions and encouraging green transport options
Working with partners we will:
- take action to reduce our carbon emissions including planting over 500,000 trees, including a new woodland close to Wing as well as many other smaller sites
- facilitate the increased use of electric vehicles (including within our own fleet) and aim to double the number of electric charging points across the county as part of our Electric Vehicle Action Plan
- Encourage recovery and increased passenger numbers using the public bus network, delivering on our Bus Service Improvement Plan and in the absence of any government funding to continue to work on delivering an Enhanced Partnership Scheme with commercial operators
- Promote the benefits and improve the attractiveness of walking, cycling and wheeling as a realistic alternative for short local trips through the development of a Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan for Buckinghamshire, continuing to deliver high quality active travel infrastructure, and encouraging and supporting schools with School Travel Plans
- Increase recycling and energy recovery rates and continue to deliver campaigns including new LitterLotto local project aimed at increasing recycling quality and a food recycling campaign
- enhance and protect our green spaces and high-quality environment, through a zero-tolerance policy towards fly-tipping and litter, a no-nonsense approach to planning enforcement, and taking action on flood prevention
- encourage ‘green growth’ by promoting well-designed homes and higher, more energy efficient standards for all new developments
- continue to seek to mitigate the impact of HS2 and East West Rail, on Buckinghamshire’s residents, businesses and special environment by securing the necessary road repairs and reinstatements, minimising the final landscape and visual impact of the projects and also supporting our communities with finding resolutions to their construction related issues
- progress our ambition to be net carbon zero by 2050 (and potentially earlier) by delivering the key actions set out in our Climate Change and Air Quality Strategy