ECC Media Release | City Council Scoops Environment Award

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17 March 2016

City Council Scoops Environment Award

LGA Awards - Group shot

A green-thinking council has won recognition at the highest level for its efforts to become an energy-neutral authority.

Exeter City Council beat off tough competition from dozens of other local authorities to win the Environment Award at last night’s Local Government Chronicle Awards in London.

Judges described Exeter’s submission as an “Excellent project, well-funded and supported and able to demonstrate achievements.”

The reward recognises the City Council’s work over recent years to reduce its carbon footprint and encourage others to do the same. By bringing in environmentally-friendly initiatives like solar panels and energy efficient lighting, the Council is able to save money and protect the environment at the same time.

The City Council is striving to become an energy neutral council by 2050.

Cllr Rachel Sutton, Lead Councillor for City Development, said: “I am delighted that the LGC has recognised the work we are doing at the City Council. Thanks to a whole host of green-thinking initiatives we will see a massive 37% reduction in energy consumption here at the Civic Centre and throughout our other buildings.”

The delivery of a vast programme of energy efficiency and solar PV projects, including some ground-breaking initiatives over the last year will bring about savings and a gross income of over £500,000 per annum. This is of huge benefit to the Council, reducing budgets and protecting Council services, as well as supporting the community and businesses.

Pioneering Solar PV canopies – the first of their kind in the UK – have been placed on two city centre car parks, and the latest installation is a 1.5MW array at the Council’s Livestock Centre. This is believed to be the largest roof top solar array in the South West, with 5,246 panels.

The PV array completed in December, follows the installation of a new roof on the building, funded by the savings and income generated by the solar panels. The array will produce 1,404mwh of energy a year, enough to power 335 homes and save 790 tonnes of carbon a year.

The Council also recently completed a solar PV installation at the former Electricity Building – now the Quay Climbing Centre – which enables the Council to sell renewable energy generated at a discounted price to the leaseholder. A second scheme of this type has also benefited the Exeter CVS at Wat Tyler House.

Other highlights have seen the City Council install Park & Plug car charging points in car parks around the City and the local authority’s involvement in the setting up of district heating networks like the one at Exeter Skypark and in the near future at the Monkerton housing development.

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LGA award

The Cowick Rose | West Exe Academy Status

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West Exe Academy Status

West Exe Technology College has now applied for Academy status and the college is currently awaiting a decision from the Department for Education on their application.

Paul Bull, Cllr Heather Morris, Cllr Rachel Sutton, Cllr Rob Hannaford and Cllr Adrian Hannaford and several Exeter Labour activists felt it imperative to advise parents and residents living in West Exe on the effects of becoming an Academy may have on both the community, and on other schools in Exeter.

Cllr Heather Morris said: “it is important that when a decision of this scale is made, that a full and proper consultation takes place. Schools are very much at the heart of a community, with families taking into consideration the location and record of a school before choosing where to live. For this reason we felt it necessary to ensure that all residents were made aware of the threats of academisation.”

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