Binsted Parish Council’s Climate and Nature Action Plan

In January 2021, Binsted Parish Council formally adopted the 2021 Climate and Nature Action Plan set out below, in recognition of the gravity of the climate and nature emergency.

The parish council itself is a relatively low contributor to greenhouse gases, but it wants to ensure its own operations and initiatives appropriately consider the environment, and to encourage and support activities being taken by others within the parish, and by the council’s partners, to move towards carbon neutrality and improve biodiversity and climate change resilience.

This plan is very much a ‘living document’, which will evolve over time as it takes onboard parishioners’ ideas, suggestions and opportunities for local partnerships.

Binsted Parish Council 2021 Climate and Nature Action Plan
Part 1: Improving the environmental performance of BPC’s own operations.
To ensure that BPC leads by example, it intends to take the following actions to move towards carbon neutrality, support biodiversity and improve climate change resilience:
1.1 Commission an Energy Audit of the Binsted Pavilion building, to identify if the energy efficiency of the building and its outside lighting can be improved.
1.2 Assess the cost of switching to buying ‘green’ electricity (e.g. Ecotricity, Octopus).
1.3 Assess if it can reduce waste going to landfill/incineration from its own operations or increase amounts that are recycled/composted; and if we need to upgrade our waste bins, their labelling, or disposal instructions.
1.4 Support our allotment holders by improving the allotment watering system.
1.5 Assess the feasibility of installing cycle racks at Binsted Pavilion.
1.6 Assess the feasibility of installing a water fountain or refill tap at the Pavilion.
1.7 Assess opportunities on BPC land to improve tree cover, tree health and biodiversity (e.g. by mowing regimes or pesticide/peat use).
1.8 Ensure its partners/contractors observe ‘good environmental practices’
1.9 Monitor its progress and provide six-monthly updates on progress made.
Part 2: Encouraging parishioners and local businesses to act and collaborate.
BPC will encourage residents, community groups and businesses to move towards carbon neutrality and improve biodiversity and climate change resilience, through these actions:
2.1  Invite the parish community to actively contribute to this Climate and Nature Action Plan and its subsequent updates.
2.2  Use BPC’s regular liaison with local organisations (e.g. SDNPA, Schools, Wickham Institute, Alice Holt Community Forum, Forestry Commission, Binsted Eco Network) to identify opportunities for community-led environmental action, including community-led participation in managing BPC greenspace.
2.3  Use BPC’s interactions with the planning system to encourage energy-efficient buildings and infrastructure, always asking the question ‘what impact could this decision have on climate change and nature?’ when evaluating planning applications.
2.4  Continue to liaise with the No Wey Incinerator action group and appropriately support its robust opposition to Veolia’s proposed Alton ‘Energy Recovery Facility’.
2.5  Encourage low-carbon transport in the parish by continuing our ‘greener transport’ discussions, started in Autumn 2020, focusing on:
(a) developing a map of cycling routes across the parish;
(b) securing safer routes to Bentley station (bike/bus), plus secure bike parking;
(c) improving the safety of A325 crossing for cyclists at Bucks Horn Oak; and
(d) assessing if there’s community interest in a BPC-funded e-bike/cargo e-bike.
2.6 Support our Footpaths Officer to develop safe, well-maintained walking routes and bridleways
2.7 Support our new Tree Warden to protect existing trees and hedges, and to persuade landowners to plant new ones.