Pioneering plans to tackle climate change at local level in South Gloucestershire

Piece by the leader of South Gloucestershire Council, Toby Savage.

I am very proud to say that we are doing some pioneering work at South Gloucestershire Council in support of town and parish councils who share our commitment to taking meaningful steps to protect our environment and meet the challenges of the Climate and Nature Emergency.

Our Biodiversity Team has developed pioneering Local Nature Action Plans (LNAPs) which provide information, guidance and a template plan for councils to help them identify priorities and actions they can take on a local level that will which protect and improve the natural environment.

We launched the LNAPs last summer because we recognised that, while town and parish councils are keen to improve their local area, they do not always have the resources to coordinate local projects. We wanted to support those local efforts, particularly among councils that have also declared a Climate and a Nature Emergency.

Already, town and parish councils covering a quarter of our district, including Sodbury, Thornbury and Yate Town Councils, are working with us to deliver their LNAPs. I am delighted that so many local councils have already signed up to set out their own action plans and look forward to more doing so.

Through our Council Plan and Green Infrastructure Strategy and Action Plan, it is our priority to take meaningful steps to protect our environment and play our part in reducing harmful emissions that contribute to climate change. It is important to recognise that the local steps we can all take are crucial.

By providing help, guidance and support to town and parish councils, we can help harness the local resources and enthusiasm to protect the places we live now and for the future.

The work on Local Nature Action plans is truly pioneering, a strong exemplar of best practice to support and champion practical action on the ground in local communities for nature. I believe that there is scope for this innovative approach to be applied across the West of England and beyond. To find out more visit our website at