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Cambridge City Council

Declarations & pledges

Climate emergency declaration

This council declared a climate emergency on Feb. 21, 2019.

Council only pledge for 2030

“In the new Climate Change Strategy, we have set a target to reduce the Council’s direct carbon emissions to net zero by 2030. ”

Climate documents

Last update: March 16, 2022

Climate Plan Scorecard

This council’s climate plans as of 20th September 2021 were assessed and scored by trained Climate Emergency UK volunteers, as part of the Council Climate Plan Scorecards project.

Show the full Scorecard Read more about the scoring process

SectionCambridge City CouncilAverage district council
Total score64%43%
Section 1 Governance, development and funding
Section 2 Mitigation and adaptation
Section 3 Commitment and integration
Section 4 Community, engagement and communications
Section 5 Measuring and setting emissions targets
Section 6 Co-benefits
Section 7 Diversity and inclusion
Section 8 Education, skills and training
Section 9 Ecological emergency

Emissions data

436.5 ktCO2

Total 2020 emissions

3.5 tCO2

per person

10.7 ktCO2

per km2




Public Sector









Data from the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy “subset dataset”, representing carbon dioxide emissions within the scope of influence of local authorities.

These councils are the most similar to Cambridge City Council in terms of emissions profile, deprivation, rural/urban population density, and geographical nearness. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Oxford City Council83%Yes2030Jan. 28, 2019
City of London81%No2027No
Cheltenham Borough Council70%Yes2030Feb. 18, 2019
Runnymede Borough Council65%NoNo targetOct. 17, 2019
City of Lincoln Council62%Yes2030July 23, 2019
Canterbury City Council61%Yes2030July 18, 2019
Newcastle-upon-Tyne City Council61%Yes2030April 3, 2019
Exeter City Council60%Yes2030July 23, 2019
Aberdeen City Council60%Yes2045No
Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council60%Yes2030July 18, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Cambridge City Council in terms of their emissions profile, based on the latest data from the Department of Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
City of London81%No2027No
Oxford City Council81%Yes2030Jan. 28, 2019
London Borough of Camden79%Yes2030April 8, 2019
Westminster City Council78%Yes2030Sept. 18, 2019
Belfast City Council67%YesNo targetOct. 1, 2019
Cheltenham Borough Council64%Yes2030Feb. 18, 2019
Nottingham City Council62%Yes2028Jan. 21, 2019
Aberdeen City Council62%Yes2045No
Newcastle-upon-Tyne City Council60%Yes2030April 3, 2019
London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham60%Yes2030July 17, 2019
Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
South Cambridgeshire District Council99%Yes2050Nov. 28, 2019
Cambridgeshire County Council98%Yes2050May 14, 2019
East Cambridgeshire District Council97%Yes2050Oct. 17, 2019
Uttlesford District Council96%Yes2030July 30, 2019
East Hertfordshire District Council95%Yes2030No
Suffolk County Council95%Yes2030March 21, 2019
Fenland District Council95%NoNo targetNo
Huntingdonshire District Council94%No2040No
North Hertfordshire District Council94%Yes2030May 21, 2019
Stevenage Borough Council94%No2030June 12, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Cambridge City Council in terms of the proportion of their population living in high deprivation, medium deprivation, and low deprivation neighbourhoods. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Oadby and Wigston Borough Council93%No2030No
Trafford Metropolitan Borough Council89%Yes2038Nov. 28, 2018
Oxford City Council89%Yes2030Jan. 28, 2019
London Borough of Bexley87%NoNo targetNo
Exeter City Council87%Yes2030July 23, 2019
London Borough of Bromley86%Yes2027No
Cheltenham Borough Council86%Yes2030Feb. 18, 2019
Broxtowe Borough Council86%Yes2027July 17, 2019
Rushmoor Borough Council86%Yes2030June 20, 2019
London Borough of Sutton85%No2045July 22, 2019

These councils are the most similar to Cambridge City Council in terms of the proportion of their population living in urban, rural, and highly rural neighbourhoods. Read more about how we calculate this.

Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Worcester City Council100%Yes2030July 16, 2019
Hastings Borough Council100%Yes2030Feb. 13, 2019
Gloucester City Council99%Yes2030July 11, 2019
Exeter City Council98%Yes2030July 23, 2019
Harlow Council98%Yes2030July 11, 2019
Plymouth City Council98%Yes2030March 18, 2019
Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council98%NoNo targetJuly 6, 2020
Derby City Council98%Yes2050May 23, 2019
West Midlands Combined Authority98%No2041June 28, 2019
City of Lincoln Council98%Yes2030July 23, 2019


This council’s climate plan has been tagged with the following features:

Powers & Responsibilities

Cambridge City Council is a Non-Metropolitan District, with powers over:

Council buildings and staff

Climate actions might include:

  • making council offices more energy efficient
  • incentivising ‘Active Travel’ or public transport use among employees
  • providing carbon literacy training for employees
    Environmental health

    Climate actions might include:

    • reducing industrial emissions through air quality enforcement
    • bringing up insulation and energy efficiency standards through enforcement of the Housing Health and Safety Rating System (HHSRS) and Decent Homes Standard 2000, for cold and damp conditions in private rental and social housing

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Planning and building control

    Climate actions might include:

    • imposing reasonable requirements that new developments comply with energy efficiency standards and get a proportion of their energy from local, renewable sources (Planning and Energy Act, 2008)
    • incorporating additional energy performance standards into their Local Plan, for new works that require planning permission
    • using Area Action Plans to guide development proposals towards lower carbon emissions or more cycling and walking routes, for example
    • enforcing legislation that requires private rental properties to be of Energy Efficiency Rating E or above (Energy Efficiency Regulations, 2015)
    • funding energy efficiency improvements on existing homes, through initiatives such as Green Homes Grants

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.


    Climate actions might include:

    • setting energy standards above building regulations (Planning and Energy Act, 2008)
    • enabling housing associations to improve the energy efficiency of their housing stock through loans
    • where councils operate their own social housing, prioritising energy efficiency – for example, by requiring Passivhaus standard for newly built schemes

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Spending, procuring, and investing

    Climate actions might include:

    • embedding carbon impact assessment as part of the council’s budgeting and financial accountability process
    • utilising Public Works Loan Board loans or the Business Rates Retention Scheme to invest in emissions-reducing capital projects that otherwise wouldn’t get funded
    • specifying low carbon equipment and practices when procuring for relevant services from suppliers
    • prioritising positive environmental impacts during procurement, through the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012
    Waste collection

    Climate actions might include:

    • establishing ‘Joint Waste Solutions’ with neighbouring councils, to get more value out of waste, recycling, and street cleaning contracts
    • running marketing campaigns to encourage residential recycling, reuse, and waste minimisation

    See more in the Climate Emergency UK checklist.

    Read more about English local authority powers in the UK100 Power Shift report.

    More about this council
    Cambridge City Council’s official homepage.
    Tyndall Centre Carbon Budget report
    Check Cambridge City Council’s ‘carbon budget’ – their share towards meeting the UK’s Paris agreement targets.
    Friends of the Earth ‘Near You’ tool
    Discover climate groups in this area, data about Cambridge City Council’s climate performance, and actions you can take.

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    Cite this page

    mySociety, Climate Emergency UK (2023). CAPE: Cambridge City Council. Available at: [Accessed 24 Mar 2023].


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