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4. Devon in the Future

4. Devon in the Future

4.1 A Vision for a Net-Zero Carbon Devon

Creating a resilient net-zero carbon Devon – where people and nature thrive

In order to move towards a net-zero carbon Devon, it is essential that we can imagine what it might look like.

When the DCE partners first declared a climate emergency, they outlined key social, economic and environmental changes they collectively expect to be needed to achieve net-zero. These are encapsulated within the Devon Climate Declaration which has been endorsed by all Devon’s local authorities and many parish councils.

2 based on apportioning the UK imported consumption emissions in 2017 of 358 MT CO2e by Devon’s GVA share. UK total GVA of £1819.8 billion in 2017 and Devon’s GVA of £24.2 billion in 2018.

The transformational changes in the Declaration include:

  • Deploying more renewable, decentralised and smart energy systems
  • Retrofitting energy-efficiency measures into our existing buildings
  • Constructing zero-carbon new buildings
  • Travelling less and using improved walking, cycling and public transport infrastructure more often, and using electric and hydrogen vehicles
  • Changing our consumption to use less, re-use more and choose low-carbon options
  • Challenging all economic sectors to review their practices and the values of those they do business with
  • Divesting from fossil fuels
  • Changing dietary patterns and reducing food waste
  • Changing agricultural practices to reduce emissions associated with farming operations, manage soils sustainably and replenish soil carbon
  • Encouraging carbon storage such as through tree planting, the use of wood in construction and peatland restoration
  • Empowering the people of Devon with the knowledge and skills to act collectively.

Through responses to the public Call for Evidence, residents have told us many things which they envisage as being part of a net-zero carbon Devon, and so the richness of the vision has continued to deepen.  The Devon Carbon Plan articulates in more detail what a net-zero Devon could be like.

Any organisation or community is encouraged to signup to endorse the Devon Climate Emergency Declaration online at

4.2 A chance to build back better

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