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South Oxfordshire District Council

Declarations & pledges

Climate emergency declaration

This council declared a climate emergency on April 11, 2019.

Council only pledge for 2025

“Our climate action targets are to: become carbon neutral within our own operations by 2025.”

Whole area pledge for 2030

“Our climate action targets are to: be a carbon neutral district by 2030.”

Climate documents

Last update: May 4, 2022
Climate Action Plan For South Oxfordshire District Council 2022-2024

Action Plan · PDF

Report: Climate Emergency Options And Next Steps, 19th September 2019

Pre-Plan · PDF · We no longer hold a copy of this document

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

South Oxfordshire District Council scored zero points in this assessment. This is because the council either didn’t have any published plans at the time of the assessment, or the plans didn’t qualify.

SectionSouth Oxfordshire District CouncilAverage district council
Total score0%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

607.0 ktCO2

Total 2020 emissions

4.2 tCO2

per person

0.9 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 South Oxfordshire District 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
Buckinghamshire Council85%No2050No
East Hertfordshire District Council85%Yes2030No
Hart District Council84%Yes2040Sept. 1, 2019
West Oxfordshire District Council84%Yes2030June 26, 2019
Tandridge District Council84%Yes2030Feb. 13, 2020
Tunbridge Wells Borough Council84%Yes2030July 17, 2019
Harborough District Council84%No2030June 24, 2019
East Hampshire District Council83%No2050July 18, 2019
Wealden District Council82%Yes2050July 24, 2019
Central Bedfordshire Council82%No2030July 19, 2019

These councils are the most similar to South Oxfordshire District 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
Harborough District Council89%No2030June 24, 2019
Cheshire East Council (Unitary)88%Yes2025May 22, 2019
East Hertfordshire District Council86%Yes2030No
Conwy County Borough Council86%No2030May 9, 2019
Tandridge District Council85%Yes2030Feb. 13, 2020
Surrey Heath Borough Council85%Yes2030Oct. 9, 2019
East Sussex County Council85%Yes2050Oct. 15, 2019
Rhondda Cynon Taf County Borough Council85%Yes2050No
Tendring District Council84%Yes2030Aug. 6, 2019
Broadland District Council84%No2050No
Council nameSimilarityHas planCarbon Neutral byDeclared emergency
Reading Borough Council97%Yes2030Feb. 26, 2019
Oxford City Council97%Yes2030Jan. 28, 2019
Warwickshire County Council96%Yes2030July 25, 2019
Wokingham Borough Council96%Yes2030July 18, 2019
West Berkshire Council95%No2030July 2, 2019
Buckinghamshire Council95%No2050No
Vale of White Horse District Council94%Yes2045Feb. 13, 2019
Gloucestershire County Council94%Yes2030May 15, 2019
Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council94%Yes2025July 18, 2019
Cherwell District Council94%No2030July 22, 2019

These councils are the most similar to South Oxfordshire District 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
Uttlesford District Council99%Yes2030July 30, 2019
West Oxfordshire District Council99%Yes2030June 26, 2019
West Berkshire Council98%No2030July 2, 2019
Mid Sussex District Council98%YesNo targetNo
East Hertfordshire District Council98%Yes2030No
South Cambridgeshire District Council96%Yes2050Nov. 28, 2019
St Albans City and District Council95%No2030July 9, 2019
Cotswold District Council94%NoNo targetJuly 3, 2019
Surrey Heath Borough Council94%Yes2030Oct. 9, 2019
Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead94%No2050June 26, 2019

These councils are the most similar to South Oxfordshire District 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
Lincolnshire County Council96%Yes2050No
Sevenoaks District Council94%Yes2030No
Devon County Council94%Yes2030Feb. 21, 2019
Norfolk County Council94%No2030No
East Riding of Yorkshire Council93%No2050Feb. 24, 2021
Chichester District Council93%Yes2025July 9, 2019
Monmouthshire County Council93%Yes2030May 16, 2019
Dorset Council93%No2040May 16, 2019
Denbighshire County Council93%No2030July 2, 2019
Northumberland Council93%Yes2030June 11, 2019

Powers & Responsibilities

South Oxfordshire District 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
    South Oxfordshire District Council’s official homepage.
    Tyndall Centre Carbon Budget report
    Check South Oxfordshire District 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 South Oxfordshire District Council’s climate performance, and actions you can take.

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    Cite this page

    mySociety, Climate Emergency UK (2023). CAPE: South Oxfordshire District Council. Available at: [Accessed 1 Apr 2023].


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