Making the Plan Reality
12.1 Engagement and Ownership
This Plan is the result of extensive collaboration between the Devon Climate Emergency partners, the Net-Zero Task Force, individuals and communities with a wealth of experience and expertise, who responded to the Call for Evidence or shared insights at the Thematic Hearings, as well as all those who participated in the Devon Climate Assembly.
The ambition is that the implementation of this Plan will be equally collaborative. Everyone in Devon needs to know about this Plan and play an active role in its implementation. Every individual, organisation and community, including the Devon Climate Emergency partners, are encouraged to look at the actions and select those that they will help deliver.
Many organisations and communities have already developed plans to reduce their emissions to net-zero. The partners are sharing these stories on the website and would love to hear about your progress. Activity can be shared with the partnership and showcased on the website, the monthly newsletter via email@example.com, or find the Devon Climate Emergency on social media.
Devon-based organisations are encouraged to join the partners in endorsing the Devon Climate Declaration and reduce their direct emissions to net-zero by 2030.
12.2 Funding and Investment
Achieving net-zero by 2050 at the latest will require a major nationwide investment programme, led by national government, but largely funded and delivered by private companies and individuals. Low-carbon markets and supply chains must scale up so that almost all new purchases and investments are in zero-carbon solutions by 2030 or soon after – some of the actions in this Plan will help achieve this.
Costs for meeting net-zero in Devon have not been prepared, but may be in a future update to this Plan. National estimates give an indication of the scale of investment required. The Climate Change Committee (CCC)1 says there needs to be a sustained increase in capital investment, adding around £50 billion annually by 2030 (compared to current economy-wide investment of nearly £400 billion). The largest increases are for low-carbon power capacity (£14 billion/a), retrofit of buildings (£12 billion/a) and the added costs of batteries and infrastructure for electric vehicles (£10 billion/a). These investments are well within the range of historical changes in UK total investment.
These costs do not take account of reduced running costs. Many – though not all – of the technologies required for net-zero have considerably lower running costs than the alternatives they replace. The transport sector has the largest opportunity to save costs, with some further savings available for buildings and electricity supply.
Electrified surface transport is far more efficient than high-carbon alternatives and has significantly lower maintenance costs. Overall, this can deliver annual operating cost savings of over £30 billion by 2050 across the UK. Low-carbon electricity generation has low costs in operation, in particular by avoiding fuel costs. The complete decarbonisation of the electricity sector will reduce operating costs by around £10 billion per year in the UK relative to the high-carbon alternative. Energy efficiency improvements and switches to low-carbon heating deliver reductions in operating costs for buildings of around £8 billion per year in the UK by 2050.
By 2050, for the UK as a whole, aggregate cost savings will be similar to the annual investment requirements for the net-zero transition. As a result, the annualised net-cost of meeting net-zero is estimated to be less than 1% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) through to 2050. This is a reduction since the figures reported in the Interim Devon Carbon Plan, which reflects the falling costs of low-carbon technologies.
This will not necessarily reduce GDP by an equivalent amount. The CCC suggest that GDP will be around 2% higher than it would have otherwise been by 2035 as resources are redirected from fossil fuel imports to UK investment. At worst the size of the economy would be similar to that expected without climate action, but with valuable co-benefits.
There are likely to be opportunities for technological innovation over the next three decades to reduce the investment costs further. There will of course be opportunities for philanthropic grant funding and the public sector to facilitate innovation and de-risk investments to bring new products and services to market. This Plan highlights the opportunities for public sector investment which the partners would like to work with national government to develop, many of which can respond to the levelling up agenda and the cost of living crisis.
12.3 Overseeing Progress
This Plan has been prepared by a collaboration of over 25 organisations with input from people across Devon. Many more people and organisations will be involved in its implementation. The existing governance arrangements have been appropriate for managing the development of the Plan, and the emerging Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Climate Adaptation Plan, but the implementation of the programme of projects in the two plans will need something different to provide strategic oversight of their progress as a whole.
12.3.1 New Oversight Structure
Figure 12.1 shows the governance arrangements which will come into place in 2022 to oversee the delivery of the Plan. The new structure aims to aid collaboration, have representation from the people of Devon and ensure opportunities to work with regional partners and government are harnessed.
Figure 12.1 – Governance arrangements for the implementation of the Devon Carbon Plan and the Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Adaptation Plan.
The day-to-day implementation of each project will be managed by the organisation leading it.
The Theme Boards, will be made up of community representatives, including youth representation, volunteer specialists (similar to those who formed the Net-Zero Task Force) and specialist staff from the partner organisations. They will be chaired by a partner organisation and will oversee progress with the implementation of the programme of projects relevant to their theme. Each quarter they will receive a report collated by the Programme Secretariat from the project managers highlighting progress and any issues arising. The Theme Boards will act to resolve issues where they are able. Issues outside their control will be raised with the Response Group.
The Devon Climate Emergency Response Group will reduce its meeting frequency from every month (as it has done since May 2019) to quarterly. It will continue to provide an opportunity for senior leaders from the partners to discuss progress, make programme decisions, seize on collaboration opportunities and be engaged with significant implementation issues that require seniority to unblock. It will be attended by the chairs of the Theme Boards to ensure cross fertilisation and ensure that the cross-cutting actions in the Plan are being monitored. The Group will also serve as the voice of the partnership with regional partners and government.
Partners’ democratic scrutiny processes will continue to have a vital role in providing constructive and robust challenge to the Plan’s implementation and to the execution of individual projects their organisations may be leading.
An independent Devon Climate Change Forum will provide impartial oversight, challenge and advice on behalf of the people of Devon to all tiers of the governance structure, meeting once or twice each year. It will include community representation. Part of its role will be to scrutinise progress on an annual basis and make recommendations for the year ahead –similar to the critical friend role of the Climate Change Committee to national government, but with greater citizen representation.
Officers from the partner organisations have been meeting monthly as the Tactical Group since May 2019. Whilst this group will not form part of the formal oversight structure, it will continue to meet to allow knowledge and experience sharing and to seize opportunities for collaboration on projects and funding bids.
12.3.2 Recruitment to the Theme Boards and Climate Change Forum
A list of the experience, knowledge and qualities needed on each of the Theme Boards and in the Climate Change Forum is being drawn up by the partnership. Devon’s citizens and organisations who feel they can contribute to the needs of the Boards and Forum will be invited to express their interest in participating. The Boards and Forum will then be assembled from those who have expressed their interest.
Figure 12.2 describes indicators that will be used to monitor the achievement of the Plan’s objectives at a strategic level. Most of the data is available from national government and local sources on an annual basis. Some indicators do not have data available yet and require further investigation into how the data can be obtained or the development of alternatives. These indicators will be reviewed by the Response Group and published online.
|Net-zero emissions by 2050 at the latest and a 50% reduction in emissions by 2030 from 2010 levels||1. Devon’s net production greenhouse gas emissions||20198 |
|2. Devon’s consumption greenhouse gas emissions||20172|
|3. Percentage reduction in Devon’s production greenhouse gas emissions since 2010||20193|
|4. Percentage reduction in Devon’s consumption greenhouse gas emissions since 2010||201922 |
Engaged communities acting for resilience and a net-zero carbon Devon
|5. Total followers on the Devon Climate Emergency social media platforms||Aug 2022|
|6. Total subscribers to the Devon Climate Emergency newsletter||Aug 2022|
|7. Number of entities endorsing the Devon Climate Declaration||Nov 2020|
|8. Percentage of the community feeling well-informed and supported to reduce their own carbon emissions||Data collection process to be established|
|9. Number of community organisations (e.g. Transition and Community Action Groups) known to be acting locally for net-zero||To be informed by consultation|
Fossil fuels phased out as an energy source
|10. Proportion of Devon’s energy consumption met by renewable energy generated within Devon||20174|
|11. Total consumption of fossil fuel energy in Devon||20195|
|12. Proportion of cars and light goods vehicles registered in Devon that are ultra-low emission (< 75gCO2/km)||20226 |
Minimised energy consumption
|13. Number of Devon’s homes with an Energy Performance Certificate of D – G||Mar 20227|
|14. Number of Devon’s commercial premises with an Energy Performance Certificate of D – G||Mar 20227|
|15. Devon’s energy consumption||20195|
|16. Amount of funding spent through dedicated public grants on domestic retrofitting in Devon||Data collection process to be established|
|17. Amount of funding spent through dedicated public grants on commercial retrofitting in Devon||Data collection process to be established|
Minimise fugitive greenhouse gas emissions
|18. Emissions from Product Use (HFCs, PFCs and SF6) in Devon||20198 |
|19. Emissions from landfill and biological treatment of waste and wastewater in Devon||20187 |
Maximise carbon storage in marine and terrestrial environments
|20. Net-emissions from livestock and land use in Devon||20198 |
|21. Devon’s soil organic matter percentage||Data collection process to be established|
|22. Carbon sequestered by improved habitat in Devon from 2020||Data collection process to be established|
|23. Net carbon dioxide sequestered by land use, land use change and forestry in Devon||2019|
Resilient local economies with access to green finance
|24. Investment in community-owned energy schemes in Devon||20189|
|25. Proportion of households in fuel poverty||202010|
|26. Proportion of spending by the Response Group organisations with entities registered with EX, PL or TQ postcodes||Data collection process to be established|
|27. Number of non-profit organisations registered with EX, PL or TQ postcodes, providing goods and services to or for Response Group organisations|
A circular use of resources
|28. Number of Repair Cafes operating in Devon||2411 12|
|29. Number of Library of Things operating in Devon||413|
|30. Total household waste collected in Devon||2020/2114 |
|31. Household waste collected per person||2020/2115|
|32. Percentage of household waste that is sent for reuse, recycling or composting||2020/2115|
|33. Commercial and industrial waste in the Devon County and Torbay council areas||2018/1916|
|34. Construction, demolition and excavation waste in the Devon County Council area||201017|
Carbon captured from the burning of fuels
|35. Proportion of carbon produced from the burning of fossil fuels in Devon that is captured by carbon capture and storage technology||2022|
Figure 12.2 – Indicators to monitor the achievement of the Plan’s objectives.
12.5 Closing Remark
Now is the right time to set a target to achieve net-zero emissions and put in place a Plan to reach it. The broad involvement of businesses, the public sector, voluntary organisations and communities working together will help to create a resilient, net-zero carbon Devon where people and nature thrive and will provide an example for other counties and regions as part of the wider collective effort to address climate change.
1 Climate Change Committee (2020) The Sixth Carbon Budget: The UK’s Path to Net-Zero. Available at: https://www.theccc.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2020/12/The-Sixth-Carbon-Budget-The-UKs-path-to-Net-Zero.pdf
2 Based on apportioning the UK imported consumption emissions in 2019 of 369 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. UK imported consumption emissions data is at: DEFRA (2022) Carbon footprint of the UK and England to 2019. Available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistics/uks-carbon-footprint/carbon-footprint-for-the-uk-and-england-to-2019
3 2010 emissions from Lash, D. et al. (2020) Net Zero Devon, Plymouth and Torbay, Centre for Energy and Environment, University of Exeter. Available at: https://www.devonclimateemergency.org.uk/studies-and-data/net-zero-devon-plymouth-and-torbay-reports/. 2019 emissions from Mitchell A. et al. (2020) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report – Devon, Plymouth, Torbay 2019. Centre for Energy and Environment, University of Exeter. Available at: https://devonclimateemergency.org.uk/studies-and-data/devons-carbon-footprint/
4 Calculated by the Net Zero Task Force from multiple sources.
5 BEIS (2021), Estimates of total final energy consumption from 2005 to 2019 at a country, regional and local authority level. Available at: Total final energy consumption at regional and local authority level: 2005 to 2019 – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
6 Calculated from DfT (2022) Statistical data set Vehicle licensing statistics data tables [online] URL: Vehicle licensing statistics data tables – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
7 LUHC (2022) Energy Performance of Buildings Data England and Wales. Available at: https://epc.opendatacommunities.org
8 Mitchell A. et al. (2020) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Report – Devon, Plymouth, Torbay 2019. Centre for Energy and Environment, University of Exeter. Available at: https://devonclimateemergency.org.uk/studies-and-data/devons-carbon-footprint/
9 Regen (2018) Devon Community Energy Impact Report, Regen. Available at: https://www.regen.co.uk/publications/devon-community-energy-impact-report-2018/
10 BEIS (2022), Sub-Regional Fuel Poverty data 2022. Available at: Sub-regional fuel poverty data 2022 – GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)
11 Recycle Devon (2022) Repair Café. Available at: https://www.recycledevon.org/reuse/repair-cafe
12 Restart (2022) Repair Café Plymouth. Available at: https://therestartproject.org/groups/repair-cafe-plymouth/
13 Recycle Devon (2022), Borrow and Share. Available at: https://www.recycledevon.org/borrow-and-share
14 Defra (2022), Local authority collected waste generation from April 2000 to March 2021 (England and regions) and local authority data April 2020 to March 2021. Table 1: Local Authority Collected and Household Waste Statistics 2014-15 to 2020-21, England. URL: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/env18-local-authority-collected-waste-annual-results-tables
15 Defra (2022), Local authority collected waste generation from April 2000 to March 2021 (England and regions) and local authority data April 2020 to March 2021. Table 3 – Selected Waste Indicators. URL: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/env18-local-authority-collected-waste-annual-results-tables
16 Devon County Council and Torbay Council (2020) Draft Resource and Waste Management Strategy for Devon and Torbay, 2020-2030.
17 Devon County Council (2014) Devon Waste Plan. Available at: https://www.devon.gov.uk/planning/planning-policies/minerals-and-waste-policy/devon-waste-plan