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Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority

Sustainability Strategy 2010-2014


contents S U S TA I N A B I L I T Y   S T R AT E G Y   2 0 1 0 - 2 0 1 4

Foreword

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Part one: the issues and the business case for action

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The issues

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Should we be doing more? – Your views

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The policy framework

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Part two: our goals and commitments

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Our pledges

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Our carbon footprint

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How will climate change impact on fires?

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Research and development

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Strategic actions

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Aim three : promoting sustainable behaviours

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Preventing environmental harm

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Public campaigns and education

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Staff travel

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Strategic actions

54

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Fire prevention

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Operations and transport

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Waste management and recycling

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Sourcing and making efficient use of natural resources

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Greening our procurement

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Environmental governance

40

Strategic actions

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G r e a t e r   M a n c h e s t e r   F i r e   a n d   R e s c u e   A u t h o r i t y

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Environmental champions

Part four: measuring and reporting our progress Aim one : reducing our carbon footprint

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Our overarching aims

Part three: creating a more sustainable Fire and Rescue Service

Aim two: adapting to climate change

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External reporting

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Strategic actions

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foreword W E L C O M E   T O   T H E   S U S TA I N A B I L I T Y   S T R AT E G Y

Welcome to Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority’s Sustainability Strategy for 2010 -2014. This strategy has been produced by Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service and endorsed by Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority. The Strategy outlines the National and Local case for action on climate change and sustainable development and our role as a regional strategic partner. It is a broad statement of our commitments and planned actions to contribute to these important and urgent priorities. The Audit Commission has identified Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Authority as a “pioneering authority that has grasped the challenge of modernisation and shown itself to be the most efficient Fire and Rescue Service in the country”. This is a significant achievement which will stand us in good stead for the future. However, we do not underestimate the magnitude of the continuing changes and issues that we will face in the years ahead. We are well aware of the inherent challenges that face the Fire and Rescue Service and in particular climate change and terrorism. Together with our strategic partners we are striving to create safer thriving communities better prepared to respond to the short and mid term implications of climate change as well as the opportunities through a sustainable approach to our use of resources.

Through a proactive approach to reducing our resource use we will not only deliver reductions in our direct carbon dioxide equivalent emissions but also achieve significant reductions in the environmental impact of our supply chain and our controllable costs. We look forward to the years ahead and give you our commitment that we will continue to work with you and our partners to make Greater Manchester a safer, greener and healthier place for everyone.

Steve McGuirk

Cllr Paul Shannon

County Fire Officer and Chief Executive

Chairman

Cllr John Bell

Cllr Jack Walton

Cllr Paul Ankers

Vice Chairman

Deputy Chairman

Member Champion for the Environment

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part one THE ISSUES AND THE BUSINESS CASE FOR ACTION


part one THE ISSUES AND THE BUSINESS CASE FOR ACTION

The issues Climate Change It is now widely accepted that our dependence on energy from fossil fuels and the large-scale clearance of rain forests to meet our resource demands has elevated the levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. This is resulting in measurable global warming and changes to our climate with an average increase in temperature of 1°C for central England observed since 1970. The UK has experienced nine of the ten warmest years on record since 1990 and sea levels around the UK have risen by 10cm since 1900. At the current rate of increase in greenhouse gas emissions the global temperatures are predicted to rise by 2 to 4°C. Even if we can restrict the rise in global temperatures to the internationally proposed 2°C target we can still expect to observe substantial impacts including:  sea rises from melting ice and glaciers   warming of oceans, desertification and loss of biodiversity  changes in weather patterns and re-distribution of species and

diseases  increased risk of drought and flooding   limitations on our ability to grow food

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Locally across Greater Manchester and the North West we are already observing changes in our weather patterns with a trend of milder wetter winters and increasing summer temperatures. Even with successful proactive action we cannot immediately halt climate changes overnight and therefore must look to adapt our communities and region to be prepared. Some examples of the impacts we can expect to see locally over the next 40 years include:  increased risk of flash floods from heavy rainfall  Increased risk of flooding from prolonged rainfall and water

contamination  Increased risk of grassland and moor land fires from drier

springs and summers  Summer water shortages and changes in the groundwater

table resulting in property damage  Increased risk of heat / cold effects particularly in the vulnerable

young and elderly  Increased demand on local resources following migration from

areas of greater risk

 Potential loss of habitats, species and natural carbon sinks

such as the peat moors At Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service we are actively working with our individual Local Authority partners and other agencies within the Greater Manchester Resilience Forum to help the communities in our region to adapt and become resilient to climate change. This involves active engagement with the groups most at risk from the negative impacts of climate change. As a first responder we are also assessing the impact of the different climate forecasts in each of the areas we serve to ensure we can continue to be effective in our ‘response’ role.  At a strategic level we are working with the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities through the Environment Commission to ensure a joined up approach to tackling climate change, energy, water, green infrastructure, transport, waste and other issues across our region.  Adapting and responding to the predicted changes in our climate is only part of the picture. We must also collectively change our behaviours and reduce our over use of natural resources to make our economy and society more sustainable. 

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Sustainable Development  Global Picture Sustainability is often described as meeting the needs of today without compromising the ability of our future generations to meet their needs. To do this we need to balance our economic growth, the natural environment and our society with no one area losing out disproportionately to the other.  The circles in the image below show the inter-dependent relationships of our economy, society and the environment. 

Our economy is shown in the centre as any economy requires society and of course an environment rich in resources to exist. The outer environment circle like our earth cannot grow and therefore for society and our economies to flourish we have to live within the capacity of our environment. The World Wildlife Fund call this concept “one planet living”. “ Ifeveryoneintheworldconsumednatural resourcesandgeneratedcarbondioxideatthe ratewedointheUK,we’dneedthreeplanets–notjustoneto supportus.Theimpacts–notleastclimatechange,deforestation andthelossofnumerousspecies–arealreadystartingtoaffect usall.” Source : WWF One Planet Future

ECO

NOM Y SOCIET Y ENV IRON M ENT

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Currently it is recognised that in the UK and across the world we have not been living in a sustainable manner. The environment which provides us with our seemingly unlimited supply of resources is being depleted irreversibly. We over consume and we are over reliant on non-renewable resources such as coal, gas and oil. 

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National and local Picture

 Loss of fertile land from erosion, deforestation and climate

change  Political unrest from uneven resource and food distribution  Intensification of water shortages in areas of population growth  Increase in disease, malnutrition and starvation from food

shortage and lack of clean water

Our UK population is predicted to grow at the fastest rate since the “post war” baby boom from 61.4 million now to 70.6 million by 2030. The growth will not be distributed evenly placing greater stresses on the developed urban areas and cities to provide utilities, housing and infrastructure as well as the loss of greenbelt in rural areas to meet housing demands.

UK population is predicted to grow

The growing global population is providing us with a further significant challenge. The United Nations predicts a growth from the current 6.5 billon to 9 billion by 2050. Developing economies such as India and China are growing fastest and with this growth comes an increased global demand for natural resources; oil, food, water and minerals. Some of the implications from increasing demand for resources include:

 Economic growth restriction for all economies

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The UK is heavily dependant upon imports, approximately 40% of our food and the majority of our energy is now sourced overseas. As a result we will not only be affected by local climate changes but also any global climate impacts. Although the UK currently has reliable sources of drinking water, population growth in built up areas will place a greater burden on the local water sources. In addition, our growing population will require the building of additional housing stock which will reduce natural drainage and soak away and increase the associated risks from flooding. The Stern Report (2008) made it clear that a delay in stabilising climate change would be dangerous and costly. One of our most pressing challenges is how we facilitate a shift from fossil fuel based economies to alternative energy sources including clean and renewable technologies. It is estimated that the point of peak oil

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production will be reached within the next decade. Irrespective of the global warming impacts resulting from fossil fuel emissions it is clear that to ensure our economic security we cannot afford to continue to rely on a limitless supply of oil.  Locally, the “Mini-Stern” report (Deloitte 2008) commissioned for the Manchester City Region and North West highlighted the case for local strategic leaders to take early action to respond to the opportunities posed by climate change. The report evidenced significant economic advantages, growth in jobs and skills and businesses through early action on carbon reduction. The report illustrates the value associated with early action by highlighting the predicted cost to Manchester City Region (£20 billion by 2020) and the North West (£70 billion) by failing to adapt quickly.  Governments and businesses must lead by example through policy, legislation and market incentives to prime and propagate the changes required to ensure a globally sustainable future. However, as individuals we cannot be absolved from taking responsibility to make changes to our lifestyles and behaviours to reduce our over consumptions of natural resources. 

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Should we be doing more? – Your views As your Fire and Rescue Service we use your views to guide our strategy and our objectives. In the Manchester is My Planet Survey (February 2007) over 2,533 Greater Manchester residents responded on questions relating to climate change.   90% of respondents expressed their desire to see Greater

Manchester take a lead on tackling climate change in the UK.   The feeling of urgency was very apparent with 93.1% believing

action should be taken immediately.  The more recent National Ipsos Mori climate change survey (June 2010) showed that most people remain either very or fairly concerned about climate change (71%) with high levels of concern surrounding our future energy security.   81% fear that the UK will become over

dependant in the future on importing energy from other countries   Over three-quarters (78%) are concerned

that electricity will become unaffordable. 

In this survey most favoured the development of a low carbon economy for the UK with greater use of renewables (solar and wind) with nuclear power remaining unpopular although more acceptable alongside the development of other energy sources. In 2009 we launched our ‘Blueprint’ staff survey and the results showed 84% of our staff felt similarly that we should be doing more on climate change and sustainability. “ Sustainabilityisanexcellentpolicyaseveryonebenefitsfrom it.Reducedutilitybillcostsandothersavingsmeanthat moneycanbeusedforotherareasandtheenvironment benefitstoo.” Source : Staff Member, Blueprint feedback From the surveys it is clear that you want to see us do more to reduce our carbon footprint and make our organisation more sustainable. 

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The policy framework International Policy

Delegates from around the world agree the Kyoto Protocol

The Kyoto Protocol is an international agreement which sets legally binding greenhouse gas emission reduction targets for 37 industrialised nations. The targets vary by country but the UK has committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 8% by 2012 against 1990 levels. The Copenhagen Accord and subsequent revisions will outline the international targets beyond 2012.

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The European Union (EU) “climate action and renewable energy package” adopted in 2009 requires EU member states to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 20% by 2020. The package also outlines a requirement for 20% of energy to come from renewable sources. The UK target is set at 15% with 10% of fuels (non aviation) to be produced from renewable resources such as bio fuels.

National Policy In 2008 the Climate Change Act was introduced which lays out the statutory targets to reduce the net UK greenhouse gas emissions. This Act requires an ambitious 80% reduction in greenhouse gases by 2050 versus 1990 levels. An interim target for 2022 requires the UK to reduce its carbon emissions by 34% below 1990 levels. Compliance with these targets is mandatory and provides a foundation for additional regulations and market incentives to promote the adoption of green technologies and sustainable behaviours.

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The Renewable Energy Strategy 2009

The Low Carbon Transition Plan 2009

In 2009 the Government published the UK Renewable Energy Strategy to provide some further information on how we will meet the European renewable energy and renewable fuel targets. The strategy describes the initiatives in plan to generate 30% of our electricity, 12% of our heat and 10% of our transport fuel from renewables. 

The Low Carbon Transition Plan and related industry, transport and renewable energy strategies set out the route map for the UK to achieve the 34% cut in greenhouse gas emissions required by 2022. These strategies outline how this will be achieved with targets for workplaces, transport, homes and energy supply.

To support this strategy financial incentives are being created to promote the early uptake of viable renewable technologies within homes, businesses and the public sector. The UK “feed in tariffs” (FITs) are one such example. FITs are effectively a renewable energy “cash back” scheme which guarantees a payment for each unit of renewable energy generated. Clearly these tariffs reduce the investment return periods and therefore make renewables more attractive. These schemes are vital to ensure we start to prepare for a decline in fossil fuel availability before the market price for the fuel becomes an economic barrier. The government predicts that achieving the targets could provide £100 billion worth of investment opportunities and up to half a million jobs in the renewable energy sector by 2020. The strategy will help the UK tackle climate change by reducing the UK carbon dioxide emissions by 750 million tonnes by 2030.

Workplaces  Emissions from the workplace cut by 13% on 2008 levels by

2020.  Investment in research and development of new low carbon

technologies to create 1.2 million jobs in the low carbon industry, worth £3 trillion, by the middle of the next decade.  Approximately £120m will be invested in offshore wind, and an

additional £60m in marine energy.  Including high-carbon industries in the EU Emissions Trading

System, saving around 500 million tonnes of carbon dioxide a year across the EU.

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Transport

Energy Supply

 Emissions from transport cut by 14% on 2008 levels by 2020.

 40% of electricity to come from low carbon sources (including

 The average new car producing 40% less carbon dioxide

emissions than at present.  Financial assistance and funding packages to reduce the cost

of electric vehicles, implement vehicle charging points and low carbon bus networks.   Sourcing 10% of UK transport energy from sustainable

renewable sources. Homes  Emissions from homes cut by 29% on 2008 levels.  £3.2 billion investment in home energy efficiency including loft

renewables and carbon capture).  Funding up to four carbon capture and storage coal fired

power stations.  Establishment of a

Government Office for Renewable Energy Deployment.  Facilitate the

building of new nuclear power stations.

and cavity wall insulation.  Smart meters to be installed in all homes.  Pilots for pay as you save schemes to increase the uptake of

green technologies.  Establishing a competition for 15 communities to be at the

forefront of pioneering green innovation.

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S u s t a i n a b i l i t y   S t r a t e g y   2 0 1 0 - 2 0 1 4


The Carbon Reduction Commitment (CRC)

Regional and Sub regional policy

The CRC Energy Efficiency Scheme is the UK’s first mandatory carbon trading scheme. The scheme requires large organizations using more than 6,000,000 kWh / yr of half hourly metered electricity – roughly £500,000 in cost terms to reduce their consumption year on year. 

Across our region there are a number of agencies working together to help make the North West more sustainable and to drive economic growth in a green economy. 

Qualifying organizations are required to buy carbon dioxide emission allowances equivalent to their total carbon footprint (excluding transport). The total allowances will be reduced each year and participants will be league tabled with rewards or penalties dependant on their performance.  Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service is a fraction below the threshold for full participation in the initial phase of the emissions trading but will be required to make an annual disclosure on total energy use and is likely to be required to participate fully in the next phase. 

The North West Climate Change Action Plan 2010 -12 has been developed by the North West Climate Change Partnership. The partnership members include our regional development organisations and public and private sector organisations such as the Environment Agency and United Utilities. The plan aims to ensure a joined up approach to delivering “a low carbon and well adapted North West by 2020”. There are three core objectives: 1. reducing greenhouse gas emissions 2. adapting to unavoidable climate change 3. capitalising on opportunities for economic growth Through our sustainability strategy for Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service we will support and contribute to the broad aims of the regional climate change action plan.

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Greater Manchester Region -  Low Carbon Economic Area (LCEA) Greater Manchester was designated the UK’s first LCEA for the Built Environment in 2009. The designation recognizes the city region’s strong track record in the regeneration of the built environment and the world leading university and research capabilities in this area. The LCEA will result in one of the largest regional “retrofit” programmes in the world. The programme will support a huge increase in the uptake of insulation and energy efficient technologies in the home and in the workplace and will create an unrivalled expertise across the region on low carbon innovation.  Low carbon research and testing facilities and new financing initiatives such as mortgage products linked to carbon savings will also be developed under this scheme.  The Low Carbon Economic Area in Greater Manchester aims to:  save six million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions  create an additional £650 million for the economy  support 34,800 jobs

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G r e a t e r   M a n c h e s t e r   F i r e   a n d   R e s c u e   A u t h o r i t y

Working with other Fire and Rescue Services Inevitably some of the regional programmes and policy will take time to develop and begin our transition to a low carbon economy. Whilst this work progresses we are actively working together with other Fire and Rescue Services on a regional, national and international level.  Each Fire Service faces very different challenges in preparing local communities to adapt to the risks posed by climate change and supporting new opportunities from more sustainable practice in their area. We recognise the value of sharing and learning from one another’s experience and through effective sharing we reduce duplication of our efforts. This in turn helps to ensure our services are leaner, represent better value for money and share a common approach to best practice.  In 2008 we instigated a North West Fire and Rescue Services Sustainability Network to drive a common approach to reducing the environmental impact of our regional Fire and Rescue Services. Through this group we have partnered with the Carbon Trust to baseline each Service’s direct carbon footprint and develop carbon management programmes to reduce our use of natural resources and associated costs. We have also been successful in bidding for funding to support the implementation of revenue and capital investment projects to reduce our environmental impacts. 

S u s t a i n a b i l i t y   S t r a t e g y   2 0 1 0 - 2 0 1 4


Our Sustainability Policy Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service covers an area of approximately 500 square miles, containing a culturally diverse population of almost 2.5 million people, over 1 million domestic properties and a wide range of commercial and industrial buildings. There are a number of densely populated centres within the area ranging from modern inner city developments to traditional mill town settlements that have expanded, diversified and developed. 

3. Promotion of sustainable development and sustainable behaviours both within our organisation and in our work with communities and partners. A full copy of our Sustainability Policy and Corporate Plan can be found on our website www.manchesterfire.gov.uk

We are committed to providing our service in a sustainable manner that enables us to continue to work effectively with the community. Sustainability cuts across all of our activities and as part of our corporate values, our Sustainability Policy incorporates three overarching principles: 1.Reduction of CO2 equivalent emissions from our direct operations and from fires in the communities we serve. 2.Adaptation of our service to the risks posed by climate change and the changing needs of our communities.

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part two OUR GOALS AND COMMITMENTS


part two OUR GOALS AND COMMITMENTS

Our Overarching Aims To ensure we respond proportionately to the national, regional and sub regional strategies on climate change and sustainable development we have developed three “overarching” aims in our Sustainability Policy. These aims underpin our strategy which contains our objectives and targets for 2010 to 2014.

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Aim one : Reducing our carbon footprint

Aim two : Adapting to climate change

We recognise fossil fuels are a finite resource and we must start acting now to reduce their consumption and our resulting carbon footprint. We need to evaluate our operations to identify measures to reduce the amount of energy, water and fuel we consume. Through the delivery of our prevention and response role we will continue to reduce the emission of CO2 resulting from fires. 

We have seen the average central England temperature rise by 1°C over the last 30 years and an increase in milder winters with heavier rainfall and flooding. This trend is predicted to continue and we must adapt our service to respond to the changing risk profile to meet the needs of the communities we serve. 

G r e a t e r   M a n c h e s t e r   F i r e   a n d   R e s c u e   A u t h o r i t y

Aim three : Promoting sustainable behaviours We must lead by example to promote and embed a culture within our organisation where each individual recognizes their responsibility to waste less, use energy more efficiently and to use greener alternatives where possible. Sustainable behaviours don’t stop when we leave work or the home. These will need to become part of our DNA to ensure future generations can enjoy a sustainable future through living within the resource balance of one planet.

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Our Pledges Climate change and sustainable development present us all with some major challenges. We have commitment and leadership within our elected Authority, leadership team and staff to do our part but it’s important to recognise that we are one part of a much larger picture. 

Nottingham Declaration In 2008 our Authority signed the Nottingham Declaration on climate change along with around 300 Local Authorities. The Nottingham Declaration is a voluntary acknowledgement that climate change and its effects are occurring and requires signatories to commit to:  Working at a local level to deliver the UK Climate Change

Programme and carbon emission reduction targets in the Kyoto Protocol

Buy Recycled Code Bought products have an embodied carbon footprint which is much harder to quantify than the carbon footprint we each produce from our direct use of natural resources. Investments in technology, design and production have resulted in recycled products that perform as well as, or better than, conventional products.  We are all aware of the need to recycle but if we don’t buy products which contain recycled content we don’t provide a market for recycling. In 2009 we became a member of Envirolink North West’s ‘Buy Recycled Code’ and have undertaken a detailed analysis of our procurement activities to ensure we maximise the use of recycled materials.

 Publicly declare commitment to achieve significant reductions

in direct greenhouse gas emissions resulting from their activities and procurement   Assess risks and impacts of climate change to ensure services

are adapted to prepare and mitigate these risks in our communities  Monitor progress of plans and publish the result

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The Prince’s Mayday Network

Environmental Management and corporate governance 

“Climatechangeisthegreatestchallengefacingmankindtoday andweonlyhaveaverysmallwindowofopportunitytoact” HRH The Prince of Wales

The Prince’s Mayday Network was convened by Business in the Community (BiTC) and is a collaboration of businesses at all stages on the low carbon journey: some leading, some just starting out. The Network is named after the international ‘Mayday Mayday’ distress signal and founded by HRH The Prince of Wales in 2007. As a member of the Mayday network we aim to  learn from other organisations and share our learnings as we work together towards a sustainable future.

In 2007 we began the implementation of an Environmental Management System (EMS) to provide a clear structure to manage our significant environmental impacts and growing legal obligations. It has become the norm for private sector organisations to use external independent audits to certify effective environmental management. In 2008 we became the first public authority to achieve external certification of all of our sites to the British Standard BS 8555 in Environmental Management. 

Sustainability Steering Group To grow and monitor the delivery of our sustainability objectives and targets we have created an internal Sustainability Steering Group. This group is chaired by our executive champion for sustainability and attended by our elected member environmental champion and department heads on a quarterly basis to drive our sustainability goals and objectives. To support this group we have established a sustainability leads network with representatives from each of our sites who in turn coordinate an environmental champions network of nearly 150 staff volunteers (and growing) who represent our eyes and ears at a local level.

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S u s t a i n a b i l i t y   S t r a t e g y   2 0 1 0 - 2 0 1 4


Our Carbon Footprint A carbon footprint provides a measure of an organisation’s contribution to climate change resulting from its activities. We recognise that developing an accurate carbon footprint for our organisation is vitally important to enable us to measure and report on whether we are achieving our aims. In 2009/10 we produced our first direct carbon footprint in partnership with the Carbon Trust.  Conducting a carbon footprint can result in:  A better understanding of the key activities that contribute to

an organisation’s environmental impact.   The development of a prioritised action plan to reduce the

areas contributing the greatest carbon emissions which also generates significant cost savings.   Comparisons of carbon emissions with other similar

organisations/buildings to determine best practice  Effective tracking of

initiatives to reduce an organisations resource use and controllable costs

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Figure 2 Annual resource costs 2008/09 and 2009/10

The graph below shows our organisation’s direct carbon footprint for our baseline year (2008/09). As we invest in energy efficient equipment and in our staff to promote individual ownership of our resource use we can reduce our direct carbon footprint.

1,000,000 2008/09

2009/10

Figure 1 Baseline carbon footprint (2008/09) and our performance in 2009/10 3,500,000

Cost £

800,000 600,000 400,000

2008/09

3,000,000

2009/10

200,000

kg CO2

2,500,000 0

2,000,000

Electricity

Gas

Metred Water

Water Rates

Fuel

1,500,000 1,000,000 500,000 0

Gas

Electricity

Diesel

Waste

Water

We have developed a Carbon Management Plan to reduce our direct carbon footprint by 25% by 2014. This target will reduce our annual direct carbon dioxide emissions by 7,866 tonnes and versus a business as usual scenario will result in an estimated saving of £2.73 million (based on current utility prices and annual 8.5% growth). In addition to our direct carbon footprint we also have indirect carbon footprint which is much more difficult to quantify. Our indirect footprint originates from the products and services we procure and the fires we prevent and respond to. 

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Products and Services

Carbon Footprint from Fires To quantify the contribution that a reduction in fires has to our indirect carbon footprint our fire engineering function has developed the world’s first model to estimate the CO2 emissions from different types of building fires. The model has been shared with Fire and Rescue Services in the UK, US and Canada and we are collaborating with The University of Manchester and UCLAN to further develop this model. Figures 3 and 4 show the estimated carbon footprint resulting from fires across Greater Manchester from 2007 to 2010. Through a focus on fire prevention we have successfully reduced the number of fires across our region over the last three years saving an estimated 3,610 tonnes of CO2 emissions.

Figure 3 Total Carbon Dioxide emissions from fires 2008/09 8000

2007/08

2008/09

2009/10

7000 6000

kg CO2

Any physical product we purchase will have consumed raw materials, energy and water in the fabrication and delivery of the product – the “embodied” carbon footprint. Although the accurate calculation of any given product’s embodied carbon footprint can be difficult we can influence this footprint through our procurement process. 

5000 4000 3000 2000 1000 0

Dwellings

Other Residential

Non Residential

Outdoor

Road Vehicle

Other

Figure 4 Indirect carbon dioxide emissions from fires 2007 to 2010

Dwellings Other Residential Non Residential Outdoor Road Vehicles Other

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part three C R E AT I N G   A   M O R E   S U S TA I N A B L E   F I R E   A N D   R E S C U E   S E R V I C E


part three C R E AT I N G   A   M O R E   S U S TA I N A B L E   F I R E   A N D   R E S C U E   S E R V I C E

Aim One Reducing our Carbon Footprint Each of the ten local authorities within our city has set challenging local targets to reduce natural resource use, prepare for climate change and reduce the carbon footprint within its boundaries. Although risk levels from climate change impacts such as flooding and wildfires vary, the breakdown of each borough’s carbon footprint are broadly the same. Wherever you reside in Greater Manchester roughly a third of your carbon footprint comes from transport, a third from businesses and public sector and a third from households. We are all therefore responsible for taking action to reduce our region’s carbon footprint.  This section outlines some of our existing and planned activities which will contribute to a city region that is greener, healthier and more sustainable.

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We have long been aware of the benefits of focussing on fire prevention to reduce the tragic loss of life from fires – 50% of which occur before a Fire Service is even called to attend. Through a strategic, risk led approach to fire prevention and through effective partnerships with the Police, Local Authorities and other agencies we have seen a 39% reduction in the number of primary fires (homes and buildings) over the last five years.  An incidental additional benefit to preventing property damage from fires is the reduction of associated carbon dioxide emissions. Over the last five years our fire prevention activities across Greater Manchester has saved an estimated 7,522 tonnes of CO2 emissions from being released to the atmosphere.

A firefighter presents home safety advice during a Home Fire Risk Assessment

Fire Prevention

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Whilst we will always ensure the safety of the public and our staff we have introduced a number of initiatives to reduce the impact of our operational activities upon the environment.  Historically emergency services responded to all incidents under blue light and “two tone” conditions. We have introduced a policy of “drive to arrive” which essentially allows our response teams to decide whether an incident requires a full emergency response or can be attended at a slower, safer pace.  To support this policy we have fitted all of our new appliances with automatic speed restriction unless under emergency blue light “two tone” conditions. This not only helps to increase the safety of our vehicles on the road but also improves our overall fuel efficiency and associated carbon footprint. A third of existing fire appliances and all new appliances are built from a non-corrosive and recyclable polymer (plastic). The plastic is more durable than alloy and steel and in addition to extending vehicle life reduces the appliance weight by three quarters of a ton and our fuel use by approximately 2%.

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New appliance recyclable polymer body work

Operations and Transport


Incident water use In addition to our fuel used in attending to incidents we are also a significant user of water. Although optimising our water use should not become a distraction to our core role of saving life and minimising fire damage, water is a valuable resource and we recognise the need to use it responsibly.

 Identify the optimum number of appliances for any given

incident to ensure we are efficient with our resources  Trial different fire fighting techniques to evaluate the best and

most water efficient technique for different incident types. Pump telemetry dials on an appliance

All of our fleet cars and vehicles are designed to run on bio diesel blends of up to 5% with our newer vehicles being capable of receiving higher blends of 30% or more. Although bio diesels are carbon neutral and release the same amount of CO2 as they absorb in the growing cycle we recognise that bio diesel crops tie up land which could be used for food production. We do not rely on bio diesels and we are actively looking at alternative powering options for our vehicles to ensure we continue to reduce our carbon dioxide emissions from transport and continue to improve air quality. 

In 2008 we introduced a remote fire appliance pump telemetry system. The system has many uses and enables our teams to:  Accurately identify the available water pressures and volumes

at an incident  Monitor the water used in the appliances attending an incident

and track the source of the water

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Air Quality “Thepumptelemetryprojecthasbeenacollaborationbetweenfire fightingspecialistsandourtransportteam.Theprojectwillenable ourservicetodeterminetheoptimumwatertanksizeforafire appliance,enablecomparativetrialsofdifferentfirefighting techniquesandgrowourunderstandingofavailablewaterand waterusagefordifferenttypesoffire. Thesestudieswillhelptoincreasethesafetyofourfirefighters whenrespondingtofiresandoptimisewaterusewhichinturn reducesrunoff,pollutionrisksandprotectsavaluableresource. Theoptimisationofwatertanksizesshouldfurtherreducethe weightofourfireappliancesanddeliverevengreaterfuel efficiency.Throughabetterunderstandingofwaterusefor differenttypesandsizesoffirewewillalsobeabletoconsider newinnovativetechniquestomaximisetheefficientuseofour resourceswhenrespondingtoincidents.” John Collier, Head of Technical Services

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We can all be confident that our air is much cleaner today than it was during the 1950s when factory chimneys pumped out large plumes of dark smoke and most houses had a coal fire. However, air pollution in our cities is still recognised as an important health impact.  Research by the European Commission in 2005 identified air pollution as being responsible for 310,000 premature deaths across Europe and 32,652 of these were in the UK. One of the main threats identified was particulate matter which can penetrate deep into the respiratory tissue and even directly into the blood stream. Particulate matter is mainly produced by traffic, particularly diesel engines, industry and some domestic heating systems. Traffic emissions also react with sunlight to produce ozone which irritates the respiratory system and causes damage to lung tissues. In 1998 we began researching alternative exhaust treatment systems to strip out emissions of particulate matter, oxides of nitrogen, sulphur and carbon more effectively than the statutory standards. In 2003 we partnered the Energy Savings Trust and The Atomic Energy Authority Aerosol Tech Division to undertake world leading research into the reduction in exhaust emissions from fire 

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New exhaust filtration system fitted to appliances

appliances. The resulting findings were shared across the industry and we adopted exhaust filtration systems that were 80% cleaner than the mandatory standards at the time. All our fire appliances purchased since 2007 meet the Euro 5 emission standards which have resulted in an 80% reduction in Carbon Monoxide (CO) and a 97% reduction in Particulate Matter vs 1992 levels.

Waste Management and Recycling In 2009 households and Local Authorities across Greater Manchester were responsible for approximately 1.1 million tonnes of waste. 32% of this waste was recycled preventing landfill gas emissions equivalent to over 150,000 tonnes and a loss of 382,000 tonnes of valuable resources.  Since the introduction of landfill tax in 1996 all waste disposed to landfill is taxed. This cost has increased steadily over the last few years and will continue to rise to £80/ton by 2014. Landfill tax creates a strong incentive for us all to reduce the waste we produce and maximise the quantity of unavoidable waste that we recycle. In 2008 we introduced a waste sort, segregation and recycling contract for all non hazardous wastes produced across our organisation. In 2009/10 this resulted in approximately 55% of our non hazardous waste being directly recycled with a proportion of the remainder being recovered for use as a bio fuel.  Over the next five years we are targeting further reductions in our annual waste quantities and an increase in our overall recycling rates to 75%. All of our wastes are handled by authorised and compliant carriers and disposers and we undertake waste audits to validate compliance through our Environmental Management System (EMS). 

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Waste segregation and recycling

Many of our fire stations are embracing the waste hierarchy to eliminate, reduce, re-use and recycle as much of the waste they produce locally as possible.

Case Study Fire fighters at Chadderton Fire Station in Oldham are determined to do their ‘bit’ for the environment.  After operating adhoc waste segregation and recycling locally for a number of years a corporate decision was made to use a single waste contractor to sort and segregate all non hazardous waste across the service to maximise recycling.  Following the introduction of this service fire fighters observed that items that had the potential to be recycled were being contaminated by kitchen waste. After discussing this with the waste contractor it was clear this was preventing some of the wastes from being effectively sorted to maximise recycling. “Essentially,whentheinternalbinswhereemptiedthekitchen wastebinwhichwasfullofcoldbeans,teabagsandkitchen“yuk” wasbeingmixedwithperfectlygoodrecyclableplastic,paperand cans.Toreducethiscontaminationanextrabinwasprovidedin thekitchenwhichisonlyusedforkitchenwasteitems.Thisisthen baggedinaclearbagandplacedintheoutsidebinsforcollection. Nowwhenthebinsareemptiedandprocessedbythewaste contractorthekitchenwasteiseasytoseeandignore.Thewaste sortingstaffinvolvedintherecyclingprocesshavefewer encounterswithleftovercoldbeansandthepercentageof contaminatedwasteisreducedandhopefullymorewastecanbe re-cycled.” Jon Heydon, Station Manager, Chadderton

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Sourcing and Making Efficient Use of Natural Resources Water Water is probably the most important resource for our organisation. We wouldn’t get very far extinguishing a fire without a reliable source of water and we recognise the importance of preserving and using water efficiently.  Unlike some of our sister Fire Services operating in drier parts of the UK we are fortunate that the average precipitation across the North West usually results in good water reserves. Of course with a changing climate this may not continue indefinitely and we have already started to see short term water shortages resulting from seasonal dips in our rainfall volumes.  We consume water in three ways:  1. Domestically through our kitchens, washrooms, showers and cleaning; 2. During training on our stations and training centre; 3. And through fire fighting.

To help us to actively track and target reducing our domestic water use we have begun and pilot to install remote water meters on some of our stations. We have included the installation of water efficient technologies in our asset strategy and most of our sites have water saving devices such as push taps and water efficient flush controls.  In our new builds we have incorporated rainwater harvesting within our minimum standards to ensure we maximise our efficient use of the water that lands on our roof space. This will ensure that future builds use less potable water for cleaning and flushing toilets. At our Ashton Community Fire Station rainwater harvesting is also providing some storage capacity to absorb flash downpours and reduce the risks from flooding.  Perhaps the simplest and most effective change we have made has been to reconsider our vehicle washing regimes which has resulted in a 75% reduction in water used to wash vehicles.

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Appliances are now washed on a “needs only” basis

“Vehiclewashingisbyfarthemostsignificantuseofmetered wateratfirestations.Traditionally,vehicleshavebeenwashedat theendofeachwatch.Thiscleanfrequencyishistoricandbased oncorporateimage,assetmaintenance,workroutinesand discipline,resultinginlargevolumesofunnecessarywateruse. Afterinitiallytriallingpressurewasherstoreducewaterand detergentuseforappliancecleaningstaffcameupwithasimpler solution. Throughachangeinpolicy,GreaterManchesterFireandRescue Serviceisnowensuringthatfireappliancesandancillary equipmentarecleanedona“needsonly”basisduringthe summermonthsandwhenthereisnosaltontheroad.Thishas achievedahugesavingofapproximately75%onwateruseand detergentuseduringvehiclewashingateachfirestationresulting inannualcostsavingsofover£500perfirestation.”

“Ourpumptelemetryworkwillcomplimenttheremotemeterroll outtobuildanaccuratepictureofourun-meteredwaterusedon thefiregroundandduringtraining.Thiswillinformeffective optimisationofourfirewaterusewithoutcompromisingthesafety ofourfirefightersorthosecaughtupinfireswhichwillalwaysbe ourfirstpriority.” Jon Aspinall, Station Manager

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Energy Consumption and Supply In 2008/09 we worked with the Carbon Trust to baseline our carbon footprint and to identify opportunities to reduce our use of energy, water, fuel and production of waste. Over 2008/09 through providing our service we consumed natural resources with an equivalent carbon footprint of 8,880 tonnes at a cost of £2.3m.  To put this into some sort of perspective this is sufficient carbon dioxide to flood fill 30 Beetham Towers – Manchester’s highest building. Clearly if we are to meet our contribution to the national legally binding CO2 emission reduction target of 34% by 2022 we need to have robust plans to reduce our direct resource use, source renewable energy, invest in green technologies and promote sustainable behaviours. To effectively reduce energy use it is important to have accurate and timely data. In 2009 we began introducing Smart meters to remotely read our electricity and gas use on all of our 44 sites. This technology is providing us with half hourly gas an electricity usage in each building and will inform the progress of our carbon management programmes and targets to reduce our resource use by 25% by 2015 vs 2008/09 levels. 

Over the last 10 years we have operated an active programme of upgrading and improving the energy efficiency of our buildings to reduce our use of natural resources. We have installed building insulation, double glazing and draught proofing to all locations and a prioritised selection of our sites have received energy efficient technologies. Many sites now have passive infra-red (PIR) occupancy controls to switch off lighting in communal areas when unoccupied and Building Energy Management systems to zone heating and cooling.  Value for money must be at the core of everything we do. With gas and electricity costs in the UK rising by over 250% in the last decade we are increasingly looking towards renewable technologies with proven economic paybacks as we repair and replace our end of life assets. 

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Ashton-under-Lyne fire station is just one of the sites to feature solar water panels

Solar water panels have been installed successfully on 10 of our sites to pre-heat water for our boilers using free UV radiation and replacing fossil fuel use. On a warm summer’s day our solar water panels can provide our entire hot water demand on the stations where they are installed.

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Following feed back from our staff surveys and feedback from residents across Greater Manchester we currently have no plans to offset our equivalent carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel use. However, we are introducing an agreement to source all of our electricity from 100% Ofgem certified renewable generation sources including; hydro, wind and biomass generation – where available. As fossil fuel prices continue to increase over the medium term it is important that we grow our capacity in alternative energy generation technologies. Renewables in the UK – in particular wind, tidal and biomass offer significant opportunities to reduce our dependence on other oil and gas producers, increase our energy security and of course reduce our greenhouse gas emissions

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Greening our procurement Whether it’s a new fire engine or a ream of paper, sustainability is as important as cost and quality for each product and service we buy. We want to buy from and work with suppliers who share our commitments of efficient resource use, equality, diversity, fair trade, ethical transparency and protecting the environment. 

The procurement team doing their bit for the environment

In 2009 we successfully bid for a grant to work with Envirolink North West and Action Sustainability to review our procurement process. We brought together our department heads and functions 

responsible for procurement decisions within our service to review our key areas of spend. This work led to the development of a list of priority areas to align our purchasing to our corporate aims and objectives.  Examples of our actions taken to green our procurement include:  Supplier sustainability evaluation within our procurement

documents including invitation to tender (ITT), pre-qualification questionnaires (PQQs) and specific tenders where identified as important.  Our timber policy ensures that all timber is purchased from

legal and sustainable sources with an audit trail from forest to end use.  Membership of the “Buy

Recycled Code” – through this we commit to maximise the recycled content in the products we procure. For example; we specify a minimum of 10% recycled content for all construction materials.

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Environmental Governance  All new builds must achieve the environmental BREEAM

“Excellent” accreditation with priority given to energy efficient technologies and whole life cost evaluation.  Procurement of multifunction printing devices to remove printer

cartridge use, install duplex (double sided) printing as standard and reduce paper use. All print paper used comes from recycled stocks and ISO 14001 certified paper mills.  Maximising recycled content during procurement decisions preserves our precious and dwindling stocks of virgin materials and drives the entire recycling market, ensuring that materials which have value are used most efficiently rather than being land filled. 

As a complex organisation it is essential that we have comprehensive system in place to minimise the impact of all aspects of our service to the environment. The International and national policy frameworks have lead to growing legislative requirements and we need a robust and efficient mechanism to ensure we are complying with our legal requirements in addition to meeting our corporate sustainability objectives. In 2009 we became the first Fire and Rescue Service in the UK to operate a certified Environmental Management System (EMS) across our entire organisation and the first Local Authority to gain certification to the British Standard for Environmental Management, BS8555 :2003.  This certification provides an objective external assessment of how effectively we are improving our service to reduce our significant environmental impacts. The system has helped us to structure and plan our sustainability initiatives in a systematic manner ensuring that we continuously improve the sustainability of our service.

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Aim One - Reducing our Carbon Footprint - Strategic Actions Priority Actions

Timescale

Lead

Reduce internal use of gas, water, electricity and diesel vs. 2009/10 levels by 25% to reduce associated greenhouse gas emissions and costs

2014/15

Estates and Environment

Reduce waste to landfill and increase recycling of all wastes to 75% from current 55% average by volume

2014/15

Estates and Environment

Continue pump telemetry project to grow water usage understanding and develop safe and water efficient fire fighting techniques

2013/14

Technical Services and Fire Safety

During replacement and renovation seek green and low carbon technologies to deliver reduced resource use within acceptable pay back periods

To 2015

Finance and Technical Services

Prepare and implement a sustainable procurement policy

Procurement

Sustain environmental governance with external EMS certified to ISO 14001

2011/12

Environment

Complete roll out of Smart meters to enable KPI development and local monitoring and targeting of resource use

2011/12

Estates and Environment

Continue to report the positive environmental impact and carbon dioxide reduction through preventing and reducing the severity of fires

To 2015

Corporate Support

Contribute to the delivery of the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership programmes to deliver shared responsibility in local carbon action plans

To 2015

Corporate Support and Environment

Source 100% Ofgem compliant renewable electricity for built estate (where available)

To 2015

Estates and Environment

Reduce paper and toner usage for printing by 25% vs 2009/10 levels

2014/15

IT and all departments

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Aim Two Adapting to Climate Change By 2050 we can expect between a 34 to 56% average annual increase in the number of secondary fires relative to the current average.

Across the UK we have witnessed significant changes in our climate over the last 30 years and by 2050 it is estimated that the average summer temperature will equate to the temperature extremes experienced in the 2003 heat wave. It might be tempting to be complacent about this aspect of climate change – after all wouldn’t we all like a “BBQ” summer but even warmer summers have some serious implications.  The very young and elderly are less able to cope with extreme temperatures. This temperature effect is particularly severe during hot spells as this can place greater stress on the heart and can exacerbate respiratory symptoms resulting in exhaustion and heat stroke. The 2003 heat wave resulted in 65,000 extra deaths across Europe and 2,000 in the UK.

How will climate change Impact on fires? The Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) have investigated the relationship between climate variation and the number of fires in the UK. Perhaps unsurprisingly, over the period 1973 to 2003 there was a clear increase in the number of secondary fires (outdoor fires) during the years with hotter drier summers. This data has been used to predict the likely increases in fires from warmer drier summers.

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Of course climate change can be confusing and doesn’t just mean warmer weather. The recent UK Climate Impacts Programme report (2009) predicts that the climate in the North West is set to get warmer and drier during the summer and wetter and milder during the winter with periods of more intense weather events. This will increase the risk of storms and flooding, and sea levels will rise. Our nearest sea levels at Liverpool have already increased by around 6cm in the last 50 years.  With the recent river and surface water flooding at Cockermouth, Hull, East Riding and Tewkesbury we have seen our drainage and flood defences tested to the limit. These floods also resulted in huge additional demands on emergency services including Fire and Rescue, Police, Ambulance and even the armed forces. Sadly these events do not just result in pollution, property damage and rebuild costs but the highest cost of all – loss of life.

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Lower Kersal Flood Risk Pilot gets underway

Case Study Lower Kersal Flood Risk Pilot The Environment Agency and Salford Council identified 1,650 homes in the Lower Irwell Valley with potentially high from flooding with a further 5,400 homes at medium risk.  Salford community fire safety have linked up with the Environment Agency to run a resource efficient multiagency combined message on fire safety, flood resilience and flood preparedness. All Watches at the local fire station in Broughton have received flood awareness training from the Environment Agency; who have supplied a questionnaire for crews to use with residents whilst carrying out potentially life saving home fire risk assessments. The questionnaires will be used to inform a shared approach to preparing and protecting the residents most at risk from flooding. “Thefirstofninetargetedcampaignsinthisareastartedin September2010withrecordnumbersofresidentsreceivingfire safetyadvice,freesmokedetectors,adviceandawarenessoflocal floodrisks.ThishasleadtorecordreferralstotheEnvironment Agencywhichwillhelpthecommunityprepareforfuturefloodrisks inthisarea.Itmightseemobviousbutalotofthemessagesthat relatetobeingpreparedforfirearesimilartothoseforfloods” Dean Ogden, Station Manager and Fire Prevention Liaison Manager

We are working in close partnership with the Environment Agency, Local Authorities and their partners and the City Region Environment Commission to ensure we have risk informed approach to preparing and responding to the impacts of climate change across Greater Manchester. Through utilising the existing city region climate change risk assessment data we will inform our corporate risk register to ensure we are as prepared as we can be for the dynamic risks posed by a changing climate.

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Research and Development With a forecasted increase in secondary grass land, moor land and wood land fires over the next 40 years there will be a corresponding increase in combustion products in the atmosphere and most significantly carbon dioxide. The UK total carbon dioxide equivalent emissions from fossil fuels, waste and agriculture were estimated by the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC) to be 576 million tonnes in 2009. This data is produced annually to assess our progress to Kyoto and other international agreements.  Currently, the carbon dioxide emissions from fires are not accounted anywhere in this data – Why? The simple answer for secondary fires is that in the UK there has not been the same level of research undertaken to quantify the release of greenhouse gas emissions from secondary fires as there has in countries like America and Australia. In these countries wild fires are much more common and often have more devastating effects which makes understanding their impact more important to human and animal health, wellbeing and local economies. 

Our Green Infrastructure Greater Manchester and the North West region has large peat deposits formed over thousands and in some cases millions of years. Peat results from plant matter decay in wet anaerobic (absence of oxygen) conditions such as bogs and wetlands. Subject to the right conditions, peat is the early stage in the formation of coal and represents a huge carbon store. Secondary fires on peat land can result in the emission of enormous quantities of carbon dioxide from carbon that has been out of the natural carbon cycle for many years – similar to fossil fuels.  Peat doesn’t need to be burnt to release greenhouse gases. As peat dries out either through climate change or human intervention to create agricultural land and peat products the peat oxidises to release carbon dioxide.  Across our region peat probably represents one of the biggest unaccounted potential sources of greenhouse gases.

Another reason is that secondary fires on grassland and young wood usually result in rapid recovery and the new growth reabsorbs the carbon dioxide emissions lost during fire. However, this is not true for all types of secondary fire. Deliberate secondary fires such as skip fires, bonfires and bin fires often related to antisocial behaviour result in emissions that may not otherwise have been released – and then there’s peat ...

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Peat drying out in a typical moorland scene

“ ... createaninter-agencyapproachbetweenFireandRescue Services,landmanagementinterests,departmentsandagencies inEnglandthatwilldevelopandcommunicatewildfirestrategies toministers,stakeholdersandthewidercommunity” Through this forum we are sharing national research on wild fire impacts to inform our training, preparedness, intervention strategies and understanding how we can mitigate the environmental impacts from secondary fires.  Carbon Footprinting Primary Fires Fires within our buildings result in the release of large quantities of greenhouse gas emissions along with other undesirable pollutants. Initial research undertaken through our fire engineering department suggests that between one and two million tonnes of unaccounted carbon dioxide emissions are released each year from primary fires. This estimate only accounts for emissions released during a fire the true carbon footprint of a fire includes: As a service we are involved in a national collaboration “The English Wildfire Forum”. The forum brings together other fire services, academic research institutions, DEFRA, The Forestry Commission, The Environment Agency and a range of local and national stakeholders. The forum aims to ; 

 The carbon dioxide emissions resulting from the manufacture

of the building materials and the energy used in transporting and constructing the building  The emissions released during the fire

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 The emissions from repairing, replacing and / or rebuilding

following a fire  The energy used to reprocess and recycle the waste resulting

from a fire  In addition to filling the current gap in the reporting of our national emissions, understanding the true carbon footprint of a fire could have many potential benefits. Currently carbon foot printing is used to convert fossil fuel usage into a standard comparable unit. This is then used to develop market incentives to promote green technologies, tax over use of fossil fuels, trade internationally to meet binding greenhouse gas agreements and used to prioritise and inform investment decisions.

In the future a method to measure the carbon footprint of fires could be used to inform building designs from the selection of the most sustainable materials with fire resistance to the use of water suppression systems.  Water suppression systems are commonly found in larger buildings to trigger automatically in the event of a fire to protect both a building and the people within it. Water suppression can also reduce the quantity of building materials and embodied carbon footprint of a building that would otherwise be required to create compartments to prevent fire development. Understanding the true carbon footprint of fires may also help to inform insurance risk and fire fighting techniques where there is no risk to life. The data will also provide further quantitative evidence of the value of focussing on fire prevention. As a service we are leading internationally on researching the carbon footprint of fires in the built environment. To ensure the benefits of this work are realised it is important that this work is linked to national policy and we are seeking partners in other fire services, academic institutions, government departments and other interested stakeholders to get involved. 

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Aim Two - Adapting to climate change - Strategic Actions Priority Actions

Timescale

Lead

We will support and inform the Local Authority climate change risk assessments and city region contingency planning to prepare for weather impacts resulting from climate change

To 2015

Contingency Planning

We will undertake our own Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue climate change risk assessment with to inform our corporate risk register and corporate plan

2011/12

Contingency Planning

We will work together with residents, businesses and organisations across Greater Manchester to raise awareness amongst vulnerable groups of the risks posed by climate change and how they need to prepare

To 2015

Community Fire Safety and Environment

We will put in place the mechanisms to report both our direct and indirect carbon footprint by borough and provide this information to our lead local strategic partners to inform their carbon and sustainability programmes on an annual basis

2011/12

Corporate Communications and Environment

We will continue our academic research and partnership to further develop a nationally adopted method to calculate CO2 emissions resulting from different types of fire and will seek involvement of other interested stakeholders

To 2015

Fire Safety and Environment

Through the English and Welsh Wildfire Forum we will work together with other Fire and Rescue Services and academic partners to gain a better understanding of the changing risk profile of wild fires in our region. Using this knowledge we will implement new techniques to prevent and reduce the damage caused to the environment by wildfires.

To 2015

Operational Risk Control

47


Aim Three Promoting sustainable behaviours We recognise that the journey to becoming a more efficient and sustainable fire service requires more than corporate policies and targets it needs to become part of every individual’s DNA. We need to change our behaviours to be more sustainable when we are at work, at home, on holiday, even as we sleep – inevitably this is the biggest challenge for all of us. 

Environmental Champions

A common barrier to individuals taking action is the perception that the efforts of one individual are too small to make a difference and that somehow through taking positive steps to reduce our environmental impact our quality of life may be reduced. It’s certainly true that one individual turning off a television or computer on standby will not make a big enough energy saving to halt climate change but when we all take action the collective impact is very large indeed. The Energy Savings Trust estimates that powering electrical equipment on standby in the UK costs nearly £1 billion a year and is responsible for over three million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from fossil fuels. Put another way this is the power output equivalent to two typical power stations. Furthermore, a simple action like reducing the heating temperature in a home or fire station by as little as 1ºC will save on average 8% of gas costs and associated green house gas emissions. 

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To help promote positive sustainable behaviours across our organisation we have enlisted volunteers on each site to “champion” and raise awareness. The Carbon Trust report that an organisation can save between 5 to 15% of utility costs through staff engaged in monitoring and targeting and resource efficient behaviours.  To support our local environmental champions we have partnered with the other Fire and Rescue Services in the North West to develop an “Environmental Champion’s Handbook”. The handbook provides guidance, tips, case studies, checklists and tools to reduce the environmental impact of our activities on each site. We also operate a sustainability working group to implement actions and respond to suggestions and feed back from staff. This group is supported at a corporate level by a sustainability steering group made up of our department heads, our member champion for the environment and our executive champion for environment.

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Case Study Environmental Protection Units

“ Therehavebeennumerousreportswhichspeculatethe economicopportunity, fromearlyactiononclimatechange throughenergyefficiency,growthingreenjobs,skillsandthe creationofnewbusinesses–somereportsestimatean opportunity totheManchesterregionaloneof£20billioninthe next10years.Lastyearwespent£2.1millionongas,electricity, waterandfuelsotheremustbeopportunitiestosave.Ofcourse someofthiswillbethroughourrefurbishmentsandcapital investments–butsimplebehaviourssuchaslocally monitoring andtargetingourenergyuseandevenassimpleas checkinglightsareoutinareasnotinusecancontribute significantefficiencies” Chief Fire Officer Steve McGuirk

Preventing Environmental Harm We respond to a wide range of incidents from road traffic collisions to large industrial site fires, moor land fires and flooding. All incidents have the potential to result in pollution to air, land, water or even all three. As a first responder once we have made the scene safe and assessed the danger to life we minimise the environmental harm resulting both from the incident and from the actions we take.

A Memorandum of Understanding was introduced in October 2004 to outline how regional fire services could respond jointly to protect the environment. Manchester Fire and Rescue Service has joined forces with the Environment Agency to provide additional protection during incidents with a new Environmental Protection Unit (EPU). The Unit which is currently based at our Bury Fire Station enhances the ability of the fire service to mitigate the impacts on the environment from a wide variety of incidents.  The unit will be sent out to all incidents involving five appliances or more in addition to those that pose a risk to the environment. “ TheprovisionoftheEnvironmentalProtectionUnitthroughthe successfulpartnershipbetweenGreaterManchesterFireand RescueServiceandtheEnvironmentAgencyhasprovidedthe abilitytosignificantlyreducedamagetotheenvironmentand heritagesitesbothduringandafteroperationalincidents,making GreaterManchesterandthesurroundingareasacleaner,greener placetolivein,workandvisit.” Lee Coleman, Station Manager, Bury   “ WearedelightedtobeworkingwithManchesterFireandRescue Servicetoensurethereisanemergencyresponsetodealingwith environmentalincidents.ThesestateoftheartEnvironment ProtectionUnitscontainessentialequipmenttominimise environmentaldamageand,togetherwithjointtraining,willensure continuedprotectionoftheenvironmentintheGreaterManchester AreaandtheNorthWest.” Simon Crozier, Environment Agency Area Manager

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Public Campaigns and Education

50

Fire Safety

Affordable Warmth (AWARM)

In the home most fires start accidentally and can be avoided through simple common sense measures to reduce risk of fire and make a home safer. Over 2009/10 we visited over 60,000 homes to provide free face to face inspections and tailored advice to reduce the likely hood of accidental fire. Our Safe 4 Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter campaigns provide seasonal risk advice to help the region stay safe and also contain environmental advice to promote energy efficiency, recycling and even the benefits of composting garden and food wastes.

Across Greater Manchester households are responsible for roughly 33% of the region’s total carbon dioxide emissions. There are over one million existing homes in Greater Manchester and although new houses will need to be carbon neutral from 2016 to meet national targets most domestic energy efficiency will need to come from our existing properties. 

G r e a t e r   M a n c h e s t e r   F i r e   a n d   R e s c u e   A u t h o r i t y

During our Home Fire Risk Assessments we have a unique opportunity to share multi-agency messages to help make residents aware of what they can do to reduce their carbon footprint, prepare for risks posed by climate change, make their homes safer and where to go for further information, grants and support.

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Young People

Fuel poverty is a huge problem affecting around three million people in the UK. The groups most likely to be affected include the elderly, people with disabilities, young children and those with long-term medical conditions. These groups are also more vulnerable to the fires in the home. Unfortunately, the groups most vulnerable to fuel poverty are often not aware of the wide array of different activities and services available to support them from grants for insulation and heating equipment to advice on energy efficiency, debt and even benefits entitlement.  The AWARM programme tackles this challenge to provide a one stop shop for those suffering from fuel poverty. Greater Manchester Fire and Rescue Service works together with PCTs, Local Authorities and other private and 3rd sector organisations to refer vulnerable groups to AWARM. “ AWARMisagreatmulti-agencyinitiativetofocussupporttothe groupsmostaffectedbyfuelpoverty.Thecrossreferralmechanism hasreallyhelpedustoaccessindividualssufferingfromfuelpoverty whoalsopresentedahigherriskfromdomesticfires.Throughthis programmewehavebeenabletotargetover2,000peoplein 2009/10toundertakehomefireriskassessmentstoreducetheir riskoffires,firerelateddeathandinjury..” Tony Lander, Fire Safety Group Manager

It’s staggering to note that around one in five young people in the UK are not in work, education or training. Youth unemployment costs the UK economy £10 million a day in lost productivity, while youth crime costs £1 billion every year.  Young people represent tomorrow’s future and we run a number of programmes to invest in young people across Greater Manchester to give them skills, confidence, motivation and belief in their potential. Through our Prince’s Trust programme two out of three unemployed participants find work or go on to further education or training after completing the programme. Young people meet Rio Ferdinand on the Prince’s Trust course

Case Study AWARM – Affordable Warmth Access Referral Mechanism 

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Ady Tonge, Station Manager, enjoys the benefits of the cycle to work scheme

of getting fitter, saving on transport costs and reducing their carbon footprint. 

Our Firefly programme educates young people aged 11 - 17 about fire safety in their homes and communities and reducing anti-social behaviour. This programme helps to make young people aware of the impacts of deliberate firesetting and antisocial behaviour. We have also developed a Community Fire Cadets programme to support 13 - 16 year olds which reflects the wide variety of skills today’s firefighters are expected to use.   Teamwork, problem solving and communication feature throughout as well as activities which prepare young people for adult life by teaching them about healthy living, handling money, job application techniques and community projects. The syllabus is divided into a range of topics and subject areas including environmental awareness and the opportunity for cadets to improve their recycling and promote sustainable behaviours. The cadet programme leads to a nationally recognised qualification; Level 2 BTEC in the Fire and Rescue Services in the Community’. 

Staff travel In addition to our initiatives to reduce the fuel usage in our fire appliances and grey fleet we promote green travel for staff commuting to work and travel during work.  In 2007/08 we signed up to the bike to work guarantee and launched our cycle to work scheme to encourage staff to reduce car journeys and go green. Cycle to work schemes support staff to purchase tax free bikes and equipment and take up the challenge

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We now have over 500 staff participating in the scheme and our recent staff travel survey found that the average distance cycled by each participant is 1,782 miles /yr. Over 2008/09 our staff cycled 784,565 carbon neutral miles - equivalent to cycling around the earth 31½ times! This feat also prevented a huge 170 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions from transport.

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Cllr Paul Ankers takes advantage of the driving simulator

“ IhavetakenatemporarypostatWiganBoroughincreasingmy dailycommutefroma1minutewalkto1hour15minutesbycar. Thetimespentdrivingandwaitingintrafficcanbeveryfrustrating plusthefuelcostsmeantthatalternativetransporthadtobethe answer.Iwasinitiallyunsureabouta40milecycleeverydayand soIborrowedabiketoputittothetest.Apartfromtheinevitable saddlesoresandstifflegs,thejourneywasenjoyableandI boughtthemostexpensivebikeIcouldaffordthroughthecycleto workscheme. Theschemehasgivenmetheopportunitytopurchaseadecent bikethatIuseeveryday.I’mnowfeelingfitterthanIhaveforyears losingmymiddleagedgut.Thecycletoworktakesthesametime asdrivingwhichfeelsgreatasIpassthecardriverssatinjams althoughIdomissthedrivetimeradioshows.” Ady Tonge, Station Manager In addition to a successful cycle to work scheme we have linked up with the Energy Savings Trust to provide staff with safe and fuel efficient driving tips. The Energy Savings Trust provides a free driving simulator and an instructor to coach staff on how to drive more safely and more efficiently. This support has helped our staff to reduce fuel consumption by 10%. Our staff have also piloted a personal transport advisory service with the EST to promote the use of public transport, cycling and walking. For staff journeys outside the local area we provide a public transport travel service and low carbon emission pool vehicles.

“ Engagingourstaffinsustainablebehaviourshasbeeneasierthan wefirstexpected.Wenowhavenearly150environmental championschallengingthewayweoperateonadailybasis, reducingourenvironmentalimpactanddeliveringexceptional publicvalue.” Adam Hebden, Sustainability Manager

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Aim Three - Promoting sustainable behaviours - Strategic Actions Priority Actions

Timescale

Lead

Communicate our sustainability strategy, targets and intentions to staff, communities and interested stakeholders

2010 -11

Corporate Communications and Environment

Evaluate regional opportunities to support behavioural change programmes emerging through the AGMA Environment Commission

2010 -12

AGMA Environment Commission

Continue the development of our staff champions and identify training needs to implement rolling training and awareness programme for all staff

2010 -12

Learning and Development

Promote in house activities externally with partners through press release and web pages

To 2015

Corporate Communications and Environment

Update internal and external web pages with content and progress against targets and objectives

2010 -15

Corporate Communications and Environment

Develop green travel policy with the Energy Savings Trust for grey fleet and staff travel

2010 -12

Technical Services and Environment

Evaluate internal recognition opportunities to promote good sustainability practice

2010 -12

HR, Corporate Communications and Environment

Continue to work with other emergency responders to deliver effective environmental protection and reduce pollution risks and environmental harm from fire fighting and incident response

To 2015

Fire Safety, Operations and Environment

Evaluate further opportunities to deliver sustainability advice / referral and link up with other partners during business and community fire safety engagement activities

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Community Fire Safety and partners

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part four MEASURING AND REPORTING OUR PROGRESS

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part four MEASURING AND REPORTING OUR PROGRESS

Measuring and reporting our progress “Therewasatimewhenwecouldsaythattherewaseithera completelackofknowledge,oratleastroomfordoubt,aboutthe consequencesforourplanetofouractions. Thattimehasgone.Wenowknowalltooclearlywhatweare actuallydoingandthatweneedtodosomethingaboutiturgently. Betteraccountingmustbepartofthatprocess.” HRH Prince of Wales

External reporting Traditionally accounting practices have focussed on the financial and economic outcomes of an organisation’s activities. More recently though there has been a growing recognition of the negative impact we are all having upon the environment and the need to measure, and report on how effective our actions are to mitigate this damage. 

will communicate this progress on an ongoing basis externally through our website and internally thorough our working groups and Authority Policy Committee. An annual summary of performance against our strategy will be made publicly available at the end of each financial year.  The Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership In 2004, the ten boroughs of Greater Manchester began operating Local Area Agreements (LAAs) which provided a framework for the management of performance with their strategic partners. As a key strategic partner we have contributed to the LAAs through reporting across a range of national indicators including four relating to climate change adaptation and mitigation:  NI 185 CO2 reduction from local authority operations  NI 186 Reduction in CO2 emissions per capita  NI 187 Tackling fuel poverty  NI 188 Adapting to climate change

As we move forward our Local Area Agreements will be replaced with the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership. The partnership will involve Local Authorities (including Fire and Police Authorities) working more closely together to drive regional economic growth and opportunities. 

We will monitor and report on our progress against our targets within this strategy to make our organisation more sustainable. We

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G r e a t e r   M a n c h e s t e r   F i r e   a n d   R e s c u e   A u t h o r i t y

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The recent formation of The Greater Manchester Combined Authority and the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership is the first step to ensuring a coordinated approach to carbon reduction across the Manchester City Region.  As a member of the Environment Commission for Greater Manchester we are working together with our partner Authorities to maximise the opportunities for effective collaboration and early action on low carbon innovation across the city.

The Low Carbon Economic Area in Greater Manchester aims to:  Save six million tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions  Create an additional £650 million to the economy  Support 34,800 jobs 

Further information relating to the Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership and Environment Commission progress can be found at: http://www.agma.gov.uk/

Measuring and reporting our progress - Strategic Actions Priority Actions

Timescale

Lead

Publish annual progress reports updating performance against the objectives in this strategy

2011 -15

Finance and Environment

Evaluate opportunities to utilise the Global Report Initiative (GRI) progress for reporting annual sustainability performance

2011 -15

Finance and Environment

Continue to report on the value savings through delivering our sustainability strategy in the annual revenue and budget reports

2010 -15

Finance and Environment

Evaluate opportunities to make resource use information more transparent via external web pages

To 2015

Environment and Corporate Support

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GMFRS Sustainability Strategy 2010-2014  

Creating a better tomorrow

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