In the run up to COP26, which will bring global leaders together to advance action on the Climate Emergency, local businesses are coming together to showcase progress in the North West.

An event at Thornton Science Park that took place on Thursday 30 September brought businesses together to find out what Cheshire and Warrington industries are already doing and the projects that are already underway at a regional and national level.

Warrington Borough Council, Cheshire & Warrington LEP and local authorities hosted the event in partnership with the University of Chester and Net Zero North West, to showcase progress to net zero and invite businesses to decarbonise.

The event included discussion on the concept of net zero carbon and why it is critical for businesses and how they can join and be in the vanguard of going green. Local businesses already actively rising to the climate challenge were showcased and other businesses were encouraged to pledge to eliminate climate damaging pollution.

As well as seeing the UK’s first fully electric bus on its route to Glasgow in a zero carbon tour, there were a series of short Carbon Stories about projects in Cheshire & Warrington which are reducing carbon emissions and advancing green innovations in the North West.

Another feature was the Net Zero North West manifesto – a route map to the region becoming the first in the UK to become carbon neutral – as well as hearing local views about the hydrogen economy; the role of natural capital; and how energy-intensive industries are tackling their carbon emissions.

This follows on from Warrington’s Climate Emergency plans to inspire businesses and partners across Warrington to become carbon literate, to take steps that address the climate emergency and equip people with the tools to become carbon neutral in their own domains. Community action matters and with the help of local businesses, we can make a real contribution to tackling the climate emergency.

Cllr Hitesh Patel, Warrington Borough Council’s cabinet member for environment, said: “The climate crisis is a very serious global challenge with a local dimension. It is also a major business opportunity.  As we move rapidly to eradicate the use of fossil fuels for heat, power and travel, new business opportunities are being created. 

“All businesses, great and small, have impacts. Some changes are simple that businesses can start today, others more difficult and may take longer, but it all businesses take note and start to do what they already can. Taking an active part can help businesses operate more efficiently and appeal to customers and potential recruits.

“In 2019 we declared a climate emergency and have since then been working hard to achieve carbon neutrality, including committing to becoming a net zero organisation by 2030. Through working via the Warrington Climate Commission, we are developing a local response to the net zero challenge.”

For more information on the council’s climate emergency plans, visit: warrington.gov.uk/climate-emergency.