Essex County Fire and Rescue Service (ECFRS) is committed to reducing our environmental impact. We have demonstrated this by reducing our carbon footprint by over a third since the 2006.
With Essex having one of the longest stretches of coastline in the country, coastal and inland flooding are significant risks to the County, as well as to heatwaves and storms. We are on the frontline of a changing climate, dealing directly with the results of more volatile weather and conditions so it is essential to address this within our organisation.
In line with the Government’s response to climate change, ECFRS set out to reduce its carbon footprint by 80% from the 2006 baseline by 2050. We work closely with other authorities and have processes in place to encourage innovation and manage risk in our technologies.
The significant investment in our property portfolio has contributed to the reduction in our carbon footprint. We proudly generate our own electricity on a number of sites; over £1m of investment into solar panels has helped us increase our self-sufficiency. We have also installed a number of more efficient heating systems such as ground, water and air source pumps, along with solar water heating systems, insulation and LED lights.
Our fleet is represented at the most influential level when procuring, designing and delivering vehicles ensuring only the most appropriate and cost effective vehicles make it to our task force.
Recognising the broad remit of sustainability, ECFRS, along with a number of other fire services, recently developed an environmental behavioral change initiative called Green Action. This encourages employees to reduce their energy and waste consumption at stations by competing with others across the UK.
All of this work has helped to reduce the carbon footprint and helps meet the vision of making Essex a safe place to live, work and travel.