Arts Council England Programme

Ben Darlington WMT

As the climate and nature crisis accelerates, the arts and culture community is needed more than ever, to focus our creativity on this moment and the solutions we need. Julie’s Bicycle works in partnership with Arts Council England to deliver an ambitious Environmental Programme for National Portfolio Organisations and the wider cultural sector. 

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Our Programme

Cultural organisations and practitioners are taking climate action with practical and creative responses celebrating and centering people and planet, nature and justice. The Arts Council England Environmental Programme ensures that the cultural sector can meet the challenges the climate crises presents by supporting organisations to take action, and accelerating and scaling our collective response.

Read our latest annual environmental report Get support with your environmental data reporting

Who can take part?

While the programme will support National Portfolio Organisations and Investment Principles Support Organisations, its reach extends beyond the portfolio, offering the wider cultural community free access to training, resources and carbon calculators, as well as guidance relevant for individual practitioners to support environmental action. Read on to find out more about our programmes and how you can get involved.

Signer in front of a conference room of people.
We Make Tomorrow 2022 at Birmingham Rep
People around a table listening and making notes
Creative Climate Leadership UK

How can you participate?

While reporting environmental data is the essential foundation for understanding your impact and reducing your footprint, there is so much more that the cultural community can do to take meaningful action, and to work together to tackle climate change.

For the Environmental Programme Julie’s Bicycle provides:

  • Programmes of activity for NPOs and IPSOs to help you take climate action. Areas of focus are: decarbonisation, resilience, justice and governance (more information below)
  • Knowledge sharing and examples of best practice from across the sector.
  • Free carbon calculators: our Creative Climate Tools  are designed specifically for the creative industries. There’s data collection templates, data entry support and a help desk for NPO users. Find out more.
  • Regular training events and workshops.
  • A Climate Justice Hub with free multimedia resources to understand the systemic causes of the climate crisis and how it intersects with issues of social, economic and environmental injustice.
  • Resource Library: A free library of over 250 resources available to all, including guides, case studies, factsheets, templates, webinars and toolkits.
  • An annual report featuring benchmarking information, news and case studies.

Join our Environmental Programme mailing list for news on programme registration, upcoming webinars and new resources.


Transforming Energy

This new programme builds on learning from our recent Spotlight programme, and focuses on decarbonisation and working towards Net Zero for buildings-based organisations.

Join the Buildings Net Zero Energy programme if you are just starting out, or have begun to work on energy emissions reduction but are keen to do more.

The Capital Investment Ready strand of this programme is for organisations already making significant progress in energy emissions reductions. Applications are currently closed and will re-open in 2024. 

Board Environmental Champions

This programme provides training, resources and a peer network for Board Members, enabling them to build the knowledge, skills and confidence to embed environmental responsibility within their organisations at governance level.

Find out more and sign up to the programme.

ian MPG

Leading Resilience

Our new training and mentoring programme will allow NPOs to build resilience to future changes in the climate with two programme strands divided into ‘organisation’ and ‘place’.

  • Organisation: In its first year, two cohorts of senior leaders will gain the skills and knowledge to adapt and respond to climate change within their organisations’ strategy and operations. 
  • Place: In the subsequent years three place-based partnerships will be identified to receive practical support to adapt to changes in climate, working in collaboration with local networks to find creative and practical solutions.

Applications for this programme will open in Autumn 2023.

Creative Climate Accelerator

Through this programme a new diverse generation of environmental leaders will emerge. It will support them to build skills and confidence to act as agents of change. They’ll bring with them the diverse backgrounds, perspectives, experiences, ideas and solutions we need to address the crises and champion justice nationally and internationally.

Applications for this programme will open in Autumn 2023.

Photo: Toastandpost

The First of its Kind – The Environmental Programme’s History

Arts Council England and Julie’s Bicycle’s Environmental Programme was launched in 2012 and was the first of its kind. It has built literacy, confidence and leadership skills, allowing cultural professionals the agency to act on climate change. Environmental Responsibility is one of the four Investment Principles that Arts Council England’s 2020-30 Strategy, Let’s Create, is built around. 


Watch the animation to find out more about the goals and achievements of the environmental programme to date.

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PICTURES: (from top to bottom) Header – Zadie Xa performing at We Make Tomorrow. Photo: Ben Darlington // Sinfonia Viva Energy. Photo Chris Webb // Creative Climate Leadership UK in March 2023. Photo: Ruth Davey Look Again; // Ian Solomon-Kawall from May Project Gardens, We Make Tomorrow 2020 // Creative Climate Leadership UK in March 2023. Photo: Ruth Davey Look Again // We Make Tomorrow 2022 at Birmingham Rep. Photo: toastandpost

Our Work

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Resource Library

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