The council has published a draft report which sets out how the authority will tackle climate change in Cumbria.

Members of the cabinet for Westmorland and Furness Council are in line to approve part two of the authority’s climate change action plan on Tuesday January 23.

The council previously committed to achieving net zero carbon emissions in the area by 2037 and declared climate and biodiversity crises in September 2022.

Cabinet member for climate and biodiversity councillor Giles Archibald said: “Westmorland and Furness Council is a brand-new council. This provides a huge opportunity to create a fresh vision for our communities, residents and our environment.

“We are driven to act in response to climate change by our values; being ecologically aware, ambitious, inclusive, collaborative and responsible. We accept our responsibility in tackling climate change, and we will aim to provide local trusted leadership in the drive to become net zero.”

According to the report, reducing private vehicles emissions remains a ‘concern’ for the authority as transport accounts for over a quarter of residents’ carbon footprint and over 75 per cent of visitor’s carbon footprint.

The report states the council has ‘ambitious’ plans to encourage more active travel by the development of local cycling and walking infrastructure plans as well as committing £1 million for local sustainable transport schemes.

The introduction of 20mph zones in appropriate places and the provision of electric vehicle chargers will reduce emissions, the report adds.

According to the report the council is developing a waste strategy which aims to achieve a 40 per cent recycling rate. In 2022/23, the council state 22.1 per cent of waste was recycled with 15.2 per cent of waste going to landfill.

Other measures proposed in the action plan include tree planting and peatland restoration as peatland is generally in ‘poor condition’ which increases carbon emissions. The council say several tree planting projects have been undertaken and are being developed, including the Community Forest project in Barrow.

Members of the cabinet for Westmorland and Furness Council are set to approve the action plan on Tuesday January 23 at Barrow Town Hall.