Solar farm

Energy self-sufficiency has not been reached by any council in the UK as of yet, but we are well on our way to our goal of being carbon neutral by 2030.

  • In 2009, our emissions were 28,064 tonnes CO2
  • In 2019, they were 13,954 tonnes CO2 – a reduction of over 50%
  • In 2030, we want to be net zero - and we have led the way on a number of key projects and initiatives as part of this journey

Our projects to date

We have developed and led multiple projects in our mission to become a greener council, and to encourage our communities to be more eco-friendly.

Solar farm
Our solar farm investments

Our most ground-breaking project is our partnership with GRIDSERVE to build the UK’s most advanced solar farms, in York and Hull. The landmark deal will make us the first council to produce all of our own electricity from clean energy, as well as generating millions of pounds every year to support essential services.

The solar farms will produce green electricity to power the equivalent of 18,000 homes. The York site consists of a 34.7MWp hybrid solar farm, plus a 27MW battery storage system. The Hull site – which will have a 25.7MWp solar farm – will produce enough electricity for all our electricity needs and will also cut our energy bills.

We expect this investment to yield £150million over 30 years. Investments like this, alongside data we measure to track our carbon emissions, provides us with confirmation that we are making excellent progress to achieve our aims.

The project helps to save 25,000 tonnes of CO2 per year meaning the council has already secured generation capacity in excess of its own power use, and the solar farms are currently exceeding expectations for their performance and financial returns. Our third, and most recent farm, is based in Cirencester, demonstrating our continued commitment to funding green investments.

LED street light
Street lighting

Many of our early carbon-saving projects focused on energy efficiency on our own estate, including schools, leisure centres and libraries.

The largest scheme, however, was the rolling upgrade of our 18,000 streetlights to new LED technology, which has saved us more than £300,000 and has reduced our carbon output significantly.

Solar panel on house
Working with housing associations on solar projects

Our home efficiency team worked on the first large-scale solar scheme on social housing. We worked with Torus to fit 2,000 former council houses with solar PV installations, with electricity supplied to tenants.

The scheme generates 4,127 MWh of electricity per year, helping to tackle fuel poverty by saving tenants over £540,000 and reducing CO2 emissions by almost a thousand tonnes.

Plastic omnium solar panels
Working with business - Plastic Omnium

Our growing knowledge of solar technology has led to us working with businesses to reduce carbon emissions.

We have installed 3,000 solar panels at the Plastic Omnium building on the Omega building site in west Warrington – covering the area the size of a Premier League football pitch. We own, operate and maintain the panels, effectively renting out the roof space of the building.

The panels are generating 735,000kWh of electricity per year, equal to the electricity used by 200 average households. Crucially, the use of the solar panels at the site will save around 208 tonnes of carbon every year.

Time Square car park electric vehicle points
Time Square car park

We installed 56 electric charging points at our Time Square multi-storey car park – one of the largest number at any one location in the country. The £85,000 investment is part of our commitment to reducing pollution, while increasing the uptake of low-emission electric vehicles in the town centre.

We're also pleased that our electric vehicle charging points in the car park (alongside a further 12 points at our Warrington West train station) are free to use, and we have plans to invest more in installing additional charging points across the borough in the future.

Solar farm
Community municipal investment

We launched our first ever Community Municipal Bond, giving people the opportunity to invest directly in us to help fund a new solar farm in Cirencester.

A £1million bond was taken up by the public, with investments of as little as £5 per individual made to support our new proposed solar farm in Cirencester. We are currently working with Dublin University on a research paper around the future of this type of bond in the UK as other councils are now interested in issuing similar bonds themselves.

Zero emissions bus outside Warrington Town Hall
Transport improvements


  • In 2020 we completed a £5 million active travel programme, including new cycle schemes in Omega, Woolston, Appleton Thorn, Latchford, Birchwood, Sankey Bridges and Padgate
  • We created a brand new cycling map and pulled together a list of our best cycling routes, available on our cycling page

Zero emissions buses

We have secured more than £20m in Government funding to transform bus travel in the borough.

We were successful in our application for Zero Emission Bus Regional Area (ZEBRA) funding, to support the introduction of up to 4,000 zero-emission buses across the country.

It paves the way to the replacement of Warrington’s Own Buses’ entire fleet of diesel buses with 120 new electric buses.

Independently of ZEBRA, we are committed, as part of the Warrington Town Deal to delivering a new bus depot – relocating the Warrington's Own Buses depot from its current site to a purpose-built new depot on Dallam Lane. The successful ZEBRA bid means we can equip the new depot with electric vehicle charging infrastructure, ready to house the new zero emissions fleet.

Our commitment to green energy will also see the new buses charged by green electricity, including from the council’s solar farm in Cirencester. Solar canopy/panels will be installed at the new depot, funded by the council, to further enhance the green credentials of the scheme.

Our transport vision

We want Warrington to be a thriving, attractive, accessible, and well-connected place with popular, high-quality walking, cycling, and public transport networks supporting our carbon-neutral future. For example, we opened Warrington West train station in December 2019, allowing local commuting trips to be made by train as well as longer journeys outside the borough.

Find out about our Local Transport Plan on the LTP4 page.


Incrementum Housing site visit
Incrementum Housing

The Incrementum Housing Development Company – set up and owned by the council – aims to deliver hundreds of low carbon homes across the borough. Our first two schemes in Birchwood and Great Sankey – delivering 161 homes for rent – are due to be completed in Summer 2022.

Incrementum’s developments are being specifically designed and planned to be energy-efficient and sustainable. All homes are being powered by clean, green energy – including roof-mounted solar panels - contributing to our ambitions for a carbon neutral future.

Find out more by visiting Incrementum's website.

Co Wheels
Warrington Car Club - Co Wheels

The Car Club forms part of Warrington’s wider travel plan for the town centre, which is dedicated to promoting sustainable travel.

You can hire electric cars, based at Time Square multi-storey car park, for as little as an hour at a time.