Sunderland’s efforts to reduce emissions and become a greener, cleaner city have seen it recognised by global experts.

CDP, a global non-profit that runs the world’s environmental disclosure system for companies, cities and regions, has recognised Sunderland as one of its 119 ‘A-List’ cities for the third year in a row.

Designed to encourage and support cities to ramp up their climate action and ambition, over 900 cities received a rating for their climate action from CDP in 2023, with just over one in 10 cities (13%) receiving an A.

To score an A, cities must detail the steps they have taken to drive down emissions, as well as showcasing their climate action plans and climate risk and vulnerability assessments.

Sunderland has already set out its commitment to help tackle the climate crisis, having developed a Low Carbon Framework with representatives from organisations across the city to collectively drive down emissions. The city council also has its own Low Carbon Action Plan, which sets out how the local authority itself will become carbon neutral by 2030.

Working with local schools, colleges and universities, it has also established the Environmental, Green and Sustainable (EGS) Group, a city-wide low carbon youth forum that is run by, with and for Sunderland’s children and young people.

Empowering young people through discussing the climate crisis, low carbon challenges and action being taken in Sunderland, the group also sees young people from across the city meet with the city’s senior leaders to contribute to low carbon discussions and decisions.

Cllr Claire Rowntree, deputy leader of Sunderland City Council and portfolio holder for the environment and transport, said: “It is fantastic to hear that Sunderland has once again been named as a CDP A-Lister.

“As a city, we are working hard towards our ambitious target of becoming carbon neutral by 2040 and the acknowledgement of these efforts by CDP is a real testament to our work.

“However, we know we can’t afford to rest on our laurels, which is why are committed to continuing to work with businesses, public sector partners, community groups organisations, our staff and residents across the city to ensure that, as we look to the years ahead, we are bringing as many people on this journey with us as possible and we are all playing our part in tackling this global challenge.

“We know that cities produce more than 60% of greenhouse gas emissions, while accounting for less than 2% of the Earth’s surface, so we all have a role to play to ensure Sunderland is doing its bit to help limit global warming to 1.5°C and help halt climate change.”