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Climate Impact Group Meeting 10th August

Climate Impact Group Meeting Minutes 10th August 2020. Download a PDF version here.


Helen Dobby | Environment Agency (Chair)
Alex Rainbow | Cornwall Council
Dave Watkins | Cornwall Council
Mark Holmes | Cornwall Council
Ellie Rowlands | Devon Climate Emergency
Emily Reed | Devon Climate Emergency
Doug Eltham | Devon County Council
Peter Chamberlain | Devon County Council
James Cooper | Environment Agency
Lesley Newport | Environment Agency
Wendy Harding | Environment Agency
Neil Hamlyn | Local Resilience Forum Manager
Elliott Batty | Local Resilience Forum Secretariat
Laurence Couldrick | Westcountry Rivers Trust


Ruth Rockley | Cornwall Council
Tanya Saker | Council of the Isles of Scilly
Lindy Woodage | Devon and Cornwall Police
Tom Cunningham | Devon and Cornwall Police
Amanda Palmer | Devon County Council
Dom Maxwell-Batten | Devon County Council
Harriet Googe | Environment Agency
Tom Dauben | Environment Agency
Penny Tranter | Met Office
Jenny Shellens | Ministry of Housing, Communities
Neil Vine | NHS
Richard Merrifield | Public Health Devon
Sara Gibbs | Public Health Devon
Nick Young | Public Health England
Robert Scarrott | South West Water
Sarah Swainbank | South West Water
Rebecca Mitchell | University of Exeter

1. Minutes of the Previous Meeting

Minutes ACCEPTED as a true record

Elliot Batty confirmed that the LRF are happy that the Met Office projections could be shared with the public but without the specific figures in the LRF tables referenced.

ACTION: Emily to arrange with Penny for a version without specific figures in the LRF tables and make it available to the group for public dissemination, including through the Devon Climate Emergency website.

Actions carried over:

ACTION Penny to complete updates to draft two of the Met Office regional climate change projections.

ACTION  Helen to connect Penny with her colleague at the Environment Agency who is conducting a review of coastal risks.

ACTION Tom to update the map to include the Isles of Scilly.

ACTION Tom, Helen and Dave to speak further to ensure the impacts outlined in the flood narrative are correct.

ACTION Laurence and Tanya to speak further about how best to pursue extending the Natural Environment narrative to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

It was noted that Helen is due to meet with Tanya to discuss ensuring that the Isles of Scilly are adequately covered by the work of the Climate Impacts Group.

ACTION Emily to ensure the Gantt chart documents the need for consultation and embedding the plan in organisations and Devon more widely.

2. Progress Since 16th of June on Initial Climate Risk Review:

a) The Met Office climate change projections document  

No further feedback or questions were raised in relation to the climate change projections document.

b) Narrative on flood risk from the Environment Agency 

Devon CC has provided written feedback to Tom Dauben.

Peter commented that as a group we need to clarify who will cover water resources more broadly, e.g. water quality and availability.

Helen raised that she sits on the Water Resources Board and can arrange for a narrative on water resources to be prepared.

ACTION Helen to provide text on water resources.

Dave raised the need to cover drought as well as flood. It was agreed that this was to be included.

c) Health narrative

Nick Young is particularly busy at the moment with COVID issues and so there has been no further progress with the health narrative.

Emily suggested using the Public Health Devon Annual Report, Planetary and Human Health, as a proxy for the health narrative for the time being. She noted that it already outlines a range of risks and needs for adaptation regarding health and climate change in Devon, many of which are also relevant to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

ACTION Emily to follow up with Sara, Rich and Nick as to the progress and next steps for the health narrative.

ACTION Should Nick be able to provide further input, Emily to check that Nick understands that the health narrative needs to be for Devon, Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

d) Natural environment narrative  

Peter gave an update on the online workshop which had been held by the Local Nature Partnership to gather feedback on the natural environment narrative. It was a constructive session and the feedback is being collated for the Westcountry Rivers Trust to consider and make amendments in response.

It was reiterated that whilst the narrative was commissioned for Devon with the dual purpose of being a stand-alone resource for the Devon Local Nature Partnership, it has great relevance for the wider South West. It was felt that only a small addition is required to pick up specific additional distinct considerations for Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly.

3. Next steps

ACTION Emily to check with Beccy Mitchell, Exeter University,  as to whether i) she is able to proceed with the narrative on social, economic and political risks, following on from the aforementioned existing narratives and the Public Health Annual Report ii) To clarify if the understanding was correct that the University had offered to pull the narratives together into one document and whether there remained capacity to do so. iii) To check if Beccy can cross reference with the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment as part of her work.

Doug highlighted that if Exeter University were unable to then we could utilize existing consultancy contracts to help to produce the document. Helen questioned if the LRF had the resource to fulfil this function. Alex Rainbow suggested that Cornwall Council might have some capacity to help with this also.

Helen raised that if Beccy Mitchell is unable to cross reference with the UK Climate Change Risk Assessment then she could check if one of the national groups she is involved in could. Doug reminded the group that following the collation of the assessment of climate related risks, whilst this was a milestone, the next stage remained to identify risk management responsibilities, mechanisms and further adaptation required – as outlined in the project management Gantt chart.

4. AOB

Peter raised the Green Recovery Challenge Fund, to help charities and environmental organisations start work on projects across England to restore nature and tackle climate change. Full details have not been released yet but are due to be at the end of the month. The fund is then likely to only be open for a matter of weeks. Peter communicated that in the Devon County Council Environment Group’s meeting that morning, they proposed to coordinate responses to the fund as far as possible to reduce competition. The Local Nature Partnership is to discuss further and it was suggested that the Climate Impacts Group might also be a good forum to stimulate sharing of ideas.

Laurence and Helen agreed this was a good idea and that their respective organisations were already considering projects to submit.

ACTION Devon County Council to establish a Sharepoint site and invite the collation of ideas from organisations on what they might submit to the fund and for which locality.

ACTION Wendy Harding, Environment Agency, to establish a Whatsapp group to allow for discussion and alerts in relation to the fund.

ACTION Helen to check with the regional action group whether she can share the discussion they had with the Climate Impact Group.

5. Close

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