Climate change is nothing new in geological timescales. But in human timescales we have had a long period with a very stable climate. The planet is now warming and there are few scientists who doubt that these changes are the result of human activity. Scientists are predicting a continued rise in global temperatures leading to:
The Lake District is already experiencing more erratic weather patterns. Disastrous floods in 2009 and drought in 2010 are just two examples of extreme weather events. Over the years ahead we expect more significant changes. A study by Natural England identifies a range of impacts including:
The Lake District National Park Authority is aiming to become a leader in managing climate change. We are working to reduce our own impact on the climate by cutting our carbon emissions. We will be working with others through action and education in partnership with other organisations - you can read more on our Climate change page.
In January 2012 we published Adapting to Climate Change in the Lake District (PDF). This looks in detail at the risks, opportunitie and actions presented by climate change.
We are working with landowners to encourage best practice in carbon management - find our more in Carbon and Land Management.
Our work to create a Low-carbon Lake District includes:
GoLakes Travel Programme (opens in new window): A three-year programme transforming how visitors get to, and travel around, the Central and Southern Lake District.
Our planning policies: these make sure development in the National Park meets the highest energy efficiency standards and, where possible, integrates low-carbon energy generation.
Carbon and Land Management: We offer information and advice on managing land for carbon, through a collaborative project with the University of Cumbria.
Our own carbon reduction: We have met our target to reduce our own carbon emissions by 25 per cent over four years. We are now committed to a rolling programme of carbon reduction.
Learning about climate: Our learning team has developed educational resources to help learning about climate change.
Adapting to Climate Change in the Lake District: We are helping locals build resilience and adapt to a changing climate. In 2012 we published an initial assessment of risks, opportunities and actions for climate change
adaptation in the Lake District. We updated this in 2014 and again in 2015. In 2013 we worked with the Ullswater community, through our Valley Planning process, to produce a guide for communities.
Cumbria Carbon Footprint Report (PDF): We are working with local authorities in Cumbria and with the Local Enterprise Partnership, to measure and manage emissions across the county.
All links open in a new window.
Play the My 2050 world interactive game (opens in new window, needs Flash 9) to show the world how to do it!