Portsmouth City Council’s commitments to building resilience to climate change are described in this policy. You can also read the council guidelines for all services and service delivery about how to build resilience to climate change into their plans.

Here are some examples of how the council departments are building resilience to climate change:

Protecting vulnerable residents against the impacts of climate change

  • Adult social care know where their provision and services are in relation to the flood zones, and have mapped staff home location to customer location, so that staff can be deployed on a geographical basis from home, if parts of the city are flooded. They have also ensured that hospital wards are made available during extreme weather, for clients who are more vulnerable to the impacts.
  • Children’s social care are looking at whether their buildings can cope with temperature extremes, especially high temperatures, as well as making sure that health advice on heat-related health risks, are embedded into risk assessment and working practices.

Plans to include climate change projections

  • Major plans and strategies e.g. the Portsmouth Plan, include policies for reducing the impacts of climate change, especially flooding and encourage developers to consider methods that ensure buildings are resilient to the impacts of climate change
  • An Infrastructure Delivery Plan is in place, which makes reference to flooding
  • Assessing whether we could develop Sustainable Urban Drainage Systems – the Flood & Water Management Act could mean that all new development must have sustainable drainage solutions in place.

Resilience of key buildings

  • Engineering and technical staff observe effects and potential effects of weather on the condition of buildings and fittings, and decide whether there is a need for additional spend
  • Using specific construction methods for new buildings to reduce the impacts of flooding, including carrying out flood risk assessments for all development proposals
  • All council owned buildings to be maintained to a good standard.

Resilience of key infrastructure, such as roads

  • Surface water management plan is in place, which assesses the risks of surface water flooding on the city
  • Flood defence plan sets out what how we reduce the impact of sea level rise on the city.

Council preparations for the impacts of climate change

  • Corporate policy on what to do in adverse weather conditions
  • Council staff can access computers from home if they can’t get into council buildings
  • Disaster recovery systems in place if computer infrastructure fails. We are also reducing reliance on national IT infrastructure.
  • Guidelines for other council services on how they can build resilience to climate change.
  • Responsible procurement policy encouraging all procurement to take account of environmental, as well as economic and social criteria
  • Climate change included in the corporate risk register
  • Increasing our online interactions with customers, so that even if buildings are inaccessible due to an extreme weather event, our services are still available online.