Becoming carbon neutral

The council adopted a motion to declare a climate emergency at its meeting held on 18 July 2019 and we have now launched a dedicated website to document our work to become carbon neutral by 2030.

Visit the Rugby Net Zero website

Climate emergency working group

The council has convened a climate emergency working group consisting of Cllrs Howard Roberts, Emma Crane, Ian Picker, Barbara Brown, Mike Brader, Jerry Roodhouse and Craig McQueen.

Declaration of a climate emergency

The climate emergency motion stated:

Rugby Borough Council:

  • Notes the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change ‘Special Report on Global Warming’ (2018) and The Committee on Climate Change’s report ‘Net Zero – the UK’s contribution to stopping global warming’ (May 2019);
  • Recognises the importance of this issue and the role which it has in responding to climate change; 
  • Recognises the significant progress which has already been made through initiatives such as the Rugby Borough Council Carbon Management Plan (2012); 
  • Notes that the UK Parliament and numerous councils across the UK have declared a climate emergency, and in doing so, have committed to action to combat climate change.

 This Council therefore declares a climate emergency and in doing so, commits to:

  •  Establishing a cross party working group to advise on the actions and timescales required to make the Council’s activities carbon neutral by 2030. The working group will report initial findings and recommendations back to Cabinet within 6 months;
  • Engaging with partner councils (specifically Warwickshire County Council and Warwickshire’s 5 District and Borough Councils), local businesses, environmental groups and residents to inform our future actions;
  • Where required, call on Government to provide the powers and resources to enable Rugby Borough Council to help deliver the UK’s carbon reduction targets.  

Climate survey

The following survey seeks to further understand Rugby residents’ perceptions on climate change, what residents can do to help tackle climate change and how the council can help to support residents in the shift to a net zero future.

Complete the survey (external link)


In 2019 the UK Parliament set a commitment in law to reach net zero carbon emissions by 2050.  Rugby wants to do everything it can to help reduce carbon emissions and help to achieve this national target and the Climate Strategy is the first step in this process.  Achieving net zero will involve many changes to the way we currently do things – such as the way we heat our homes, the type of transport we use, how we build our homes and buildings, how we value nature and the food that we eat.

In order to tackle climate change, scientists and the Climate Change Committee (the Government’s independent advisers on climate change) have said that people will have a crucial role in delivering net zero and that it will be crucial for governments (local and national) to inform, engage and involve people in the transition to a low carbon and climate resilient economy at an early stage of the process.

Achieving net zero carbon emissions will require a communal effort with everyone involve working together and we’re keen for the general public to work alongside the council and businesses in taking action. Part of the Council’s Climate Change Strategy will seek to support residents to make the changes which they would like to, in order to support addressing the climate emergency. It will also be really important for people to have access to trusted information so that they are able to understand and consider the options available and to be aware of the many benefits and opportunities that can come from a net zero future.

Rugby Climate Summit

The Rugby Climate Summit took place on Saturday 18 September 2021, from 10am to 1pm. The summit was hosted by Rugby Borough Council. It was held online to allow greater participation and reduce the risk of spreading covid-19. 

The summit explored some of the themes highlighted in the climate survey and updated participants on some of the steps being taken to lead the borough to a low carbon future.

You can view the summit below: