Durham has been hailed as the UK’s greenest city as carbon emissions reduced by half and air quality continues to improve.
Solar technology specialists, The Solar Centre, researched Government data to rank cities based on 10 green criteria including waste management, air quality, carbon emissions and green spaces.
Durham came out on top in the study which compared 59 cities including Swansea, which came second, and Newcastle Upon Tyne, which ranked third.
Climate change has been at the top of Durham County Council’s agenda and The Solar Centre findings were welcomed in recognising the authority’s 47 per cent carbon emissions reduction between 2009 and 2019.
Another significant factor was the score for air quality, with Durham holding the best score compared to other cities. Availability of green spaces and parks also boosted Durham’s overall ranking.
Cllr John Clare, Durham County Council’s climate change champion, said, “We are pleased to receive this recognition for our work to combat climate change, which is a testimony to the amazing work of the council’s environment and low carbon teams. Creating a clean and green county is at the core of the council’s Climate Action Plan and we will continue to build on these promising figures.
“We declared a Climate Emergency in February 2019, which committed us to an 80 per cent reduction in council emissions by 2030 and to making the county carbon neutral by 2050.
“We are constantly implementing ways to tackle climate change from innovative angles. This includes helping businesses and residents become more energy efficient, and integrating clean technology in our county’s infrastructure.”