Climate change toolkit for Darlington businesses

Risks to livestock, insufficient insurance cover, burst pipes and events cancelled due to flooding are amongst some of the eventualities and impacts covered in a new online climate change toolkit for local business in Darlington.

As part of its commitment to become carbon neutral by 2050, Darlington Council has devised an online toolkit to help other local businesses, including the agricultural sector, to find out more about how climate change can impact on any business sector.

A dedicated web page now plays host to a wide range of information and tools designed to help business owners to become more aware of the potential impact of climate change on their business and the actions they can take to prepare for almost any eventuality.

The business resilience manual – Weathering the Storm in Darlington – provides a practical guide to a range of business areas on subjects such as flooding, how to avoid it, how to plan for it and ensuring a business has adequate insurance to cover the damage and disruption caused by it.

The detailed guide provides a step-by-step, hints, tips and questions that any business must ask itself to check if they are prepared. In addition, there is a comprehensive signposting section to other organisations that can help with energy saving measures, environmental reporting regulations and much more.

Non-executive directors can join Chapter Zero, a free network to engage and share experiences with other businesses.

Free materials are also available to download from the Chapter Zero website. These can help a business prepare its own climate change plans.

As part of its own climate change strategy, the council is supporting the recently created North East of England Climate Coalition.

This is England’s first regional climate coalition and is open to organisations from all sectors to join.

Councillor Heather Scott, leader of Darlington Council and portfolio lead on climate change, said: “As a council we are committed to climate change and we are working across all sectors of our business to see where we can change how we do things in order to become carbon neutral by 2050.

“However, we do not exist in isolation and part of our strategy is to engage with local businesses to help them become more aware of climate change and how it can impact their business activities.

“These resources will act as a useful tool to help local businesses on their way with their own climate change strategy which, in turn will help to make the whole borough a greener, cleaner place to live and work.”

Councillor Alan Marshall, the council’s cabinet member for economy and regeneration, added: “Regular news stories of floods, drought and storms across the world and more locally, serve as a stark reminder that we must all act now if we are to continue to live, work and do business in a stable and sustainable way.

“I urge local business owners to take the time to visit our page, see what’s on offer and begin to take steps towards tackling climate change.”

The manual and links to further information can be found on the council’s sustainability page at darlington.gov.uk/sustainable.