Residents back West Midlands’ net zero bid

Hundreds of residents across the West Midlands have pledged to cut their own carbon footprint in support of the region’s journey to being net zero.

By offering the free training, certified by the Carbon Literacy Project, the WMCA is helping residents to understand the impact of climate change, what personal actions they can take to help tackle it, and how they can influence others to do the same.

Three hundred residents have started the training with the WMCA having set a target of getting 2,500 people certified as ‘Carbon Literate’ in the next two to three years, in support of the #WM2041 target for the West Midlands to become a net zero region within the next two decades.

Helen Buttrick, 42, from Warwickshire, is among those who have completed the training. Helen said:

“I really enjoyed taking the learning from the sessions and being able to apply that to my life. We’ve gone on as a family to get solar panels installed on the roof of our house, I ran a community event in a local village hall with a friend, with talks and stalls on things like solar panels, heat pumps and sustainability swaps.

“The course gave me the confidence to give a talk on small scale rewilding to encourage people to increase biodiversity in their garden and set up a business called Helia Net Zero to help individuals and communities reach their sustainability goals with research, support and coaching.”

The success of the free training has also contributed to WMCA becoming the first combined authority and one of just 143 organisations across the UK to be awarded Carbon Literacy Organisation status by the Carbon Literacy Project.

CLO status recognises its commitment to a low carbon culture. The WMCA has been awarded the Bronze accreditation as a first step on the ladder to achieving Gold ‘standard’.

As part of the accreditation, 10 per cent of the WMCA workforce have also been through the training to help embed, support, and deliver carbon literacy internally and across the region, and to actively contribute to a reduction in carbon emissions. Andy Street, Mayor of the West Midlands and WMCA chair, said:

“It’s wonderful news that hundreds of people have already signed up for carbon literacy training. The WMCA is really a leader in this field and has been formally accredited as a Carbon Literate Organisation.

“As we focus on meeting our #WM2041 net zero commitment and seek to collectively tackle the climate emergency, the fact that so many people living and working right across our region are playing their part is a genuinely encouraging sign – expanding their knowledge and making a practical difference in the months and years ahead.”

Free Carbon Literacy training is open to anyone living in the region. There are three self-led e-learning modules and one facilitated module on Zoom. 

You can sign up at


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