Environment and Waste Issues Front and Centre
Author: Councillor Mike Wilcox
I wanted to take a moment to give you an update on the work I’ve been doing since the recent elections. It’s been a busy few weeks filled with meetings and discussions with fellow councillors and constituents from across the district. Together, we’ve been focusing on our commitment to the environment and waste services that affect us all.
One of the meetings that stood out was with Councillor Steve Norman, the Chair of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee, as well as representatives from the Labour and Liberal Democrat parties. We talked about our future development plans, with a special emphasis on addressing the challenges of climate change. We had a productive session exploring different strategies, including relaunching our carbon reduction plan and improving our action plan tracking with a new dashboard. We also discussed local nature recovery strategies and initiatives like Let’s Recycle, while assessing our policies related to climate change. I’m excited to drive these initiatives forward in the coming weeks and months, and I’ll be sharing our progress with you.
Another area of great importance to us is Waste Services. In the past couple of weeks, I’ve had the privilege of meeting with experts in the field to discuss exciting topics like government initiatives for waste collection. These initiatives have the potential to greatly support the work of our Joint Waste Services. We also discussed our current fleet of waste vehicles, exploring options for their replacement. It was inspiring to consider alternatives like hydrotreated vegetable oil, which could fuel our bin lorries and help reduce our carbon footprint and emissions. We even looked into the possibility of hydrogen-powered trucks. It’s an exciting prospect!
I had a great conversation with David Dundas, a local resident and energy consultant working with Birmingham City Council. We talked about waste and energy management, and I wanted to learn from their experiences and see if we could apply any valuable insights to our own efforts. Sharing knowledge and expertise between neighbouring communities is a fantastic way to make progress, and I’m enthusiastic about exploring more opportunities like this.
This week, I had the pleasure of meeting with Mike Kingham and Pam Beale from Transition Lichfield/Zero Carbon Lichfield & Whittington & Fisherwick Environment Group (WFEG), as well as Southern Staffordshire Community Energy (SSCE). Together, we discussed how we can work collectively on initiatives that benefit the whole district. Collaborating with these groups, along with other experts, is crucial to our journey. By combining our efforts and working together, we can achieve remarkable results.
I want to assure you that I’m committed to keeping you updated on our progress. In the coming weeks and months, I’m looking forward to working closely with these dedicated groups and individuals, as well as exploring more opportunities to collaborate. Together, we can create a more sustainable and thriving Lichfield District