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Climate Change

Climate change and biodiversity are a priority for Chorley Council. We are delivering a range of environmental and biodiversity enhancing measures to promote a cleaner environment, reduce pollution and enable greener choices. 

In 2019 we declared a Climate Emergency, pledging to work towards making the Borough carbon neutral by 2030. We have put in place our Climate Change Strategy and Clean Air Strategy, which contain action plans to inform decisions taken by the Council to tackle the climate and nature emergency.

Chorley Council is a member of UK100 and the UK100 Countryside Climate Network, a network of councils which works towards reducing greenhouse gas emissions, improving air quality and the natural environment for the benefit of our communities. Find out more on the UK100 website.

Read our Climate Change Strategy

Read our Clean Air Strategy

Our Climate Change Programme covers the following themes:

Air Quality

Air Quality is important for our health, wellbeing and the environment.

Find out more about Chorley's Clean Air Strategy and Air Quality here.

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Carbon Footprints

A priority within the Climate Change Strategy was to monitor the carbon footprint of the Council and Borough. Carbon Footprints are required to measure progress towards the Council's goal of achieving net-zero carbon emissions. We are publishing our Carbon Footprint publicly to show our progress, check back here for updates:

Carbon Footprint Report Final 2019-2020 (Word doc) [526KB]

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Community and Engagement

As a Council we work to engage with our local community at all stages of the Climate Change programme and encourage resident feedback through meetings and consultations on the climate change programme.

During the drafting of our Climate Change Strategy 2022-24, we consulted our residents to ensure their opinions and priorities were included in the strategy. The outcome of the Climate Change Strategy Draft Consultation can be read here  Climate Change Strategy Consultation Outcomes Report 2022 (Word doc) [534KB] .

We have previously organised a climate debate between local schools and local councillors, attended school assemblies, delivered a school art competition on climate change and community tree planting events. We also meet with independent community groups to discuss the implementation of the council's climate action plan. 

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Energy Efficiency

The Council is taking measures to reduce our carbon footprint by improving the efficiency of our buildings and operations. Solar panels have been installed on Chorley Town Hall, Wigan Lane Sports Centre and King George V Sports Pavilion to supply energy to the building and all new construction follows the BREEAM construction standards for high energy efficiency.

Here is some information regarding Home Energy Efficiency and tips for you to do at home to lower your energy and water usage  Home energy and water saving tips (Word doc) [15KB] .

There may be more actions you can do at home to lower your energy and water usage through COSY HOMES Lancashire - who may be able to support increased insulation and boiler replacement for eligible residents.

You may be able to get free or cheaper insulation to reduce your home's energy bills through the Great British Insulation Scheme. There is eligibility criteria to access the scheme and some people may need to make a financial contribution, but it is open to homeowners, landlords or tenants (either renting privately or from a housing association).

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The Council have a number of initiatives to support local food growing. There are currently 8 allotment sites owned by the Council to promote food growing. The Open Space and Sports Recreation Strategy (PDF) [913KB] also has a number of projects to increase the amount of land available to enable community food growing and orchard planting. 

Food waste is an increasing concern. It costs the average person in the UK around £200 a year, and the average family £700. You can find more here on how to reduce your waste or try home composting.

Chorley market is committed to connecting traders with local charities and community groups to implement a method whereby surplus food can be collected or distributed to disadvantaged, unemployed or homeless people affected by food poverty. The market also supports initiatives such as 'love food hate waste'.

The Council currently has a waste and recycling strategy in draft which will cover actions relating to the increase in recycling rates, including food waste. This is still in draft while we await clarifications from DEFRA regarding recycling expectations.

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Grants and Funding

If you are part of community group, local charity or environmentally focused collective there are schemes available which could provide financial assistance to help you to deliver projects in our communities. Here are some ideas to get you started, it is also worth doing your own searches as well to find other sources which could help. Bear in mind that eligibility criteria apply for some funding schemes.

Net Zero Business Accreditation Scheme

Expressions of interest are now open for new Net Zero Business Accreditation Scheme!

Chorley council is committed to reaching our ambitious target of net zero by 2030, and we have launched the Chorley Net Zero Business Accreditation scheme.

We want to recognise and showcase the fantastic work businesses in the borough are doing to help us reach the net zero target and to fight climate change.

We want to reward and publicise excellent practice, inspire other businesses and create a ripple effect of net zero innovation across Chorley.

To find out more about the scheme visit the:

Net Zero Business Accreditation Scheme webpage

Useful support and resources for businesses

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Nature and Biodiversity

The Council has set a target to plant a tree for every resident by 2025, that's a total of 116,875 trees! We are achieving this by planting trees on our own land, farmers' land and giving trees and hedges to residents to plant at home. We hold tree giveaways during the planting season regularly, keep an eye out for the next one.

Find out more about our Emergency Tree Plan, wildflower meadows and wildlife corridors on our Nature and Biodiversity page.

You can find out more about the November tree giveaway on Citizenspace here: 

Tree giveaway event

As a Council we do not use peat within our own assets such as our parks and flowerbeds, we only use peat free compost. We also do not use pesticides on our grounds in an effort to conserve the natural biodiversity.

Chorley has 6 parks and open spaces which have been awarded green flag status. Discover our Green Flag parks

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Planning and the Local Plan

A key action for us and the neighbouring local authorities of Preston City Council and South Ribble Borough Council is the revision and updating of the Central Lancashire Local Plan. There will be further consultations coming on the development of the new Local Plan, these will be publicised when they are open. 

The production of the new Central Lancashire Local Plan and our input into that process is an immensely important factor in shaping planning policies that are right for our communities and to ensure sustainable development. Working towards net zero carbon emissions is an objective of the emerging new Central Lancashire Local Plan. 

Officers from all three authorities have been providing input and expertise in relation to policies on climate change, air quality and biodiversity. There is a particular focus on sustainable development, energy generation and conservation, sustainable transport options and the infrastructure inclusions necessary to enable sustainable choices. This ambitious plan will then support the individual authorities to implement planning guidance that seeks to minimise any negative impact of development on environment and strive for improvements.

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Sustainable transport

Sustainable travel choices are a great way to reduce our environmental impact. Cycling, wheeling and walking are also great for our health. We have a new page full of information to help, with tips and ideas on how to make the most of walking, wheeling, cycling, buses and trains across Chorley, follow this link to the Active and Sustainable Travel webpage

Chorley Council have also invested in a network of Electric Vehicle Charging Points in Chorley and we are looking to expand the network to help residents and visitors.

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Waste and Recycling

One of the easiest and cost effective ways was can help the environment is to remember the three R's - REDUCE, REUSE, RECYCLE.


Reducing how much we throw away where we can is often the best option. To do this we can reconsider what we buy, if we can borrow something from a friend or choose items with less packaging. 

Chorley has many local businesses, hardware and ironmongers, market stalls, refill stores and farm shops, which sell everyday groceries and household items loose, so you can buy the quantity you need in your own container to reduce waste.

Chorley Repair Cafe is a local group of volunteers who try to repair broken items and extend their life. For clothing repairs and alterations there are traditional cobblers and alterations services around the Borough.

For food and garden waste you can try home composting or the council's garden waste collection service. Try to avoid burning rubbish on bonfires as they can affect our health through poor air quality.

You can find more here on how to reduce your waste and reducing your plastic footprint.


The next best option is to reuse. If you have things you no longer need, but are still useful, consider passing on to friends or family, selling them, donating to a charity shop or using an online sharing platform (such as Chorley Freegle, Freecycle or Social Media groups). You could even create your own community 'swap shop'.  

It's time to get creative! There are many reuse and 'upcycling' ideas online, some you may not have thought of. (One of our climate officers has reused an old bathroom suite as planters and a bird bath - after a thorough clean)


Recycling turns rubbish in to something new by breaking it down and using it as a feedstock for new products. Collection, sorting and reprocessing use energy, which is why it is often better to reduce and rescue where possible. There are still many reasons for why we should recycle

You can read more about what happens to your waste and recycling and visit the waste section of our website to find information on bin collections. 

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Our rivers and waterways support many habitats and offer sites for recreation.

To reverse biodiversity decline and tackle pollution we are a member of the River Douglas Catchment Partnership. This group works with communities, businesses, landowners, councils and farmers to improve water quality and nature in many of the major local watercourses in Chorley, including the River Douglas, River Yarrow, Carr Brook and the Leeds & Liverpool Canal.

At home you can make some small adjustments to save water and reduce energy bills. Our local water company has a website with ideas and free water saving gadgets.

If you have space a water butt can capture rain water to use in the garden or for washing cars. 

Our website has more information about grid, drain and flooding problems

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Contact us

If you have any queries relating to climate change, please email our dedicated Climate Change officers at

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