A toolkit for city regions and local authorities

Climate action co-benefits:
Cutting carbon and improving people’s lives

Authors: Emma Jones | Cara Jenkinson | Simon Brammer | Matthew Ahluwalia | Frieda Wignall | Kate Williamson

Toolkit chapters

Guide to this toolkit

This toolkit is primarily intended for use by local authority officers when briefing elected members, mayors and senior managers. Each of the co-benefits sections includes facts and figures, links to data for local areas, the business case for taking action, opportunities for action and inspirational examples of successful initiatives from around the country. Case studies are shown in boxes with Ashden Award winning organisations indicated via the Ashden logo. These can be used as the building blocks for making the case for action in your area; the intention is that users can pick and choose the messages and examples that will resonate in their areas. The links to films in this toolkit are designed to bring to life some of the challenges that people in towns and cities face. The aim is to facilitate conversations around the co-benefits of climate action, ‘multi solving’ climate and social issues.


This toolkit has been produced with support from CAG Consultants (Denny Gray) and with input from Dr Neil Jennings, Sarah Woods, Paul Bourgeois, Leanne Wilson, Jane Wildblood, Simon Slater, Mark Cridge, Liz Watchorn and Nick Gardner. We would like to thank all of the Ashden winners who have allowed us to feature their work in the toolkit.  We are grateful to The National Lottery Community Fund for funding the development of the community engagement chapter.

Ashden’s Cities work

More than 80% of UK residents live in an urban area – and towns and cities account for most of our carbon emissions. So sustainable cities are crucial to creating a better, fairer society. They will unlock new and well-paid jobs, better physical and mental health, improved housing and green spaces, and community resilience.

Councils know what communities need – so a locally-focused approach is essential to ensure a just transition. But authorities are over-stretched, under-resourced, and often working in isolation. We bring them together, share best practice, highlight opportunities and create connections and partnerships.

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