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Sheffield Waste £500K On Climate Change Officers

January 22, 2013

By Paul Homewood


As with all local authorities, Sheffield City Council are having to make cutbacks to their budgets, including possible closure of the local swimming pool. However, it seems they have £500K to waste on employing ten Climate Change Officers, or, as they now like to call themselves, “Sustainable Development Officers”.


I asked the Council, under FOI, to let me have a list of employees whose jobs “primarily involve work relating to climate change”. It turns out there are ten of them, with salaries ranging from £30000 to £68000. They even include two “Publicity and Promotions” Officers!

Salaries are set within salary bands, but assuming they are at the mid points of the banding, the total bill, including National Insurance and Pension Contributions, amounts to about £450000. When overhead costs, such as office, computer and travelling costs are added, the total budget must exceed £500000.


According to the Council website, Sheffield’s total carbon footprint, i.e the city as a whole, not just the council, accounts for 0.8% of the UK total. If the UK completely stopped emitting CO2 tomorrow, it would not have the slightest effect on global temperatures, so I really don’t know what difference the Council think their posturing will make.

But as their website proudly boasts

We are committed to tackling the causes and effects of climate change. In 2006 we signed the Nottingham Declaration on Climate Change, publically committing us to action on climate change.

So it looks like the polar bears can stop worrying!

  1. mitigatedsceptic permalink
    January 22, 2013 2:20 pm

    Thank you Paul – we need more of this kind of info.
    This AGW religion is crazed!

  2. January 22, 2013 2:44 pm

    Can I get one of the jobs and work from home in Bristol?

  3. Edward. permalink
    January 22, 2013 6:46 pm

    OK, times that by all the metropolitan councils in WYorks and South Yorks = £5 million +…………………

    Then, £500k x that by how many DMC’s – there are around the country – say 120 = £60 million p/a.

    Though, the EA’s* budget comes in at around £1 billion [then there are; DECC, DEFRA, Met Office]. By comparison DMC’s climate change officers – it is ‘small change’ but still a vast waste of precious resource. More especially presently, when the central government grant is being pared – but in the end you have to ask yourself – if they can afford to pay these numpties so much salary – is money [council budgets] really that tight??
    FOI for…… you really must ask about the recycling officers and council time, cash and manpower devoted to that renewable boondoggle…………….

    All that money [wasted] being paid out for nothing but a political fiction – man made global warming – always follow the money.

    *Environment Agency.

    • January 22, 2013 7:27 pm

      Apart from anything else, 40 grand is a pretty good wage by anybody’s standards. Why should people on an average wage of £20k pay to subsidise them?

      • Edward. permalink
        January 24, 2013 12:11 am

        That’s a very fair point and I cannot provide you with an answer.

        Sufficed to say, that if the said employee was an expert in his or her field [ha ha] and their labours were justifiable – by being of great benefit to greater society but particularly to local people – then the money would be less grudgingly given [like we have a choice!].

  4. Andy DC permalink
    January 23, 2013 12:58 am

    OMG! It’s worst than we thought! The waste, fraud and abuse, that is.

  5. Charente permalink
    January 23, 2013 11:02 pm

    Paul, as a local unemployee, my question is that do you think that their previous positions were going to be lost and therefore they were shuffled sideways or upwards?

    • January 24, 2013 10:41 am

      The jobs seem to have been created in 2008/9, but may have been just redesignations.

      At the average salary rate, though, 3 times as many jobs could have been created, and probably with much more value for the community.

  6. Bob MacLean permalink
    February 21, 2013 10:05 am

    Paul – I’ve been thinking of asking the same question of my District & County Councils. I’m trying to think of suitable wording that ensures they reply with enough information, including employees with part of their duties involved with “Climate Change”. Also “Sustainability” and “UN Agenda 21” are other guises for this activity. Has anybody produced a template for the question that doesn’t give them wriggle room?

    • February 21, 2013 10:19 am


      The wording I used was:-

      A list of jobs, funded by the council during FY 2011/12, that primarily involve work relating to any of the following:-

      a) Climate change
      b) Mitigation of climate change
      c) Sustainable development
      d) Reducing CO2 emissions

    • Roger Dewhurst permalink
      December 19, 2014 7:32 pm

      An excellent question. The answer should be widely publicised.

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