The Council and democracy Zero Carbon Manchester

Residents take action

Climate Change is already affecting where we live. By changing a few things we can lower our carbon footprint, save money and do our bit to help get Manchester to zero carbon by 2038.  

Let’s repair, rather than replace, items 

By repairing our belongings - whether a car bumper, or those jeans that need adjusting - we’re saving money and the environment. 

Let’s eat less meat and dairy 

Meat and dairy have a very high carbon footprint, especially beef and lamb. Reduce your meat consumption and consider vegetarian or vegan options. 

  • Having at least one plant-based day a week is a fun and easy way to do something good for the planet and our future. Meat Free Mondays have some great ideas on how to do this. 
  • By buying more food in season in the UK, and buying locally sourced foods where you can, the food you eat will impact our planet less. Try Googling local farms near you or that deliver to your area. 
  • World Wide Fund for Nature have a guide for how to eat more sustainably. 

Let’s avoid single-use plastics 

What are ‘single-use plastics’? Single-use plastics are goods that are made primarily from fossil fuel–based chemicals (fuel that harms our environment) and are meant to be disposed of right after use—often in just a few minutes.  

Single-use plastics include: 

  • Plastic bottles 
  • Styrofoam takeaway containers 
  • Plastic straws, packaging materials, cutlery and shopping bags. 

Here are some quick tips to reduce how much you rely on single-use plastics: 

  • Have a reusable cup handy. Whether you buy a fancy bottle or just reuse the plastic one you’ve already got. 
  • If you go shopping, remember to take a cloth bag 
  • Replace plastic Tupperware for glass or steel containers 
  • If you have no choice but to buy a plastic bottle or a plastic container at the supermarket, reuse it instead of throwing it away. 

Let's leave the car at home 

Cars give out gases (like carbon dioxide) that are harmful to our lungs and our planet. Carbon dioxide is a major cause of climate change and air pollution. Reducing your vehicle emissions doesn’t just reduce pollution, but it can save you money too. 

  • Bee Active Network is a scheme from our friends at Transport for Greater Manchester that makes it easier for us by joining together buses, trams, cycling, walking and rail, so we can cycle, walk or use public transport as much as we can.  
  • If you need support to get cycling, TfGM offer cycle training
  • Don’t forget, there are bikes all over the City Centre available for you to hire through the Beryl app
  • If your bike has had better days – remember we’re repairing and not replacing now – see if you can fix it yourself, or find somewhere that can

We can live a wild life 

By letting our gardens grow as they please, we’re helping our planet and our neighbourhoods flourish. 

  • Insects and other minibeasts need safe spaces to shelter, hide from predators and raise their young. You can help them by building a bug hotel in your garden or outside area. Here’s how you can build a bug hotel
  • If you’re able to, try growing your own plants and food. This gives you more control over what ends up on your table and you’re saving the fuel needed to create the produce in factories and on the trip to the supermarket. 
  • Plants can supply natural drainage. By growing trees and plants, we’re reducing the possibility of waterlogging. 
  • What’s the most eco-friendly way to use water? Get it straight from the sky. You can get yourself a discounted rain water collector to sit in your garden through Save Water Save Money. 

If you are part of a community-based group needing funding for a project to benefit our region environmentally and socially, the Greater Manchester Environment Fund may be able to help. 

Or, if you want to get more hands on in your local community, take a look at In Our Nature or contact your Neighbourhood Officer for more information about projects in your area. 

Go even further with your carbon saving 

Check if you’re eligible for up to £6,000 off low carbon heating technologies with the Government’s Boiler Upgrade Scheme

Greater Manchester Combined Authority have created a new portal, Your Home Better, that offers advice on measures to help you achieve a more energy efficient, healthier and comfortable home. 

There are so many more ways we can save money and save our planet. Each Manchester ward has climate change officers and teams that are helping reduce our emissions. Get in touch to find out more or find out what’s happening in your community:

We are working with businesses, residents and partners to support people to gain the skills needed to deliver our zero carbon targets. Find out more about green skills and careers

Find out about other actions for businesses and organisations.

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