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Tactical Group Meeting Minutes, 22nd March 2023


Doug Eltham, Devon Climate Emergency

Charlotte Brown, Devon Climate Emergency

Emily Reed, Devon Climate Emergency

Donna Sibley, Torridge and North Devon Councils

John Golding, East Devon District Council

Catherine Causley, East Devon District Council

Adam Williams, South Hams and West Devon Councils

Louise Sawyer, Devon and Cornwall Police

Iain Miller, University of Plymouth

Jason Ball, Mid Devon District Council

Lucinda Brook, Plymouth City Council

David Rose, South West Water

Sarah Hargreaves, Resource Futures

Charlotte Eddisford, Resource Futures

1. Minutes of previous meeting

The minutes were AGREED to be a true record of the discussion.

Actions carried over:

ACTION: Doug to catchup with David Rose about green bonds as an option to consider when financing net-zero.

ACTION: Doug to speak to Peter Lefort and Paul Hardman about any guidance Exeter and Plymouth universities could provide the partnership about attracting finance for net-zero.  

ACTION: Doug to speak to Devon County Council’s Economy and Enterprise team about attracting finance for net-zero.

2. Project Progress Report

2.1 Project Communications

Charlotte provided an update reflecting Section 1 of the Progress Report appended to these minutes. No further questions asked.

2.2 Update on the Devon Carbon Plan

Emily provided an update reflecting Section 2 of the Progress Report appended to these minutes. No further questions asked.

2.3 Update on the DCIoS Adaptation Plan

Emily provided an update reflecting Section 3 of the Progress Report appended to these minutes. No further questions asked.

3. Community Action Groups

Charlotte and Sarah presented information about the research they are undertaking as part of the Devon Community Action Groups project. The research is building a picture of community support activity in Devon for acting on net-zero, and what needs communities have to do more.

It would be helpful as part of the survey to understand what the capacity of climate officers in local authorities is to assist communities with local projects.

The outcomes of the survey will be used to inform the design of the extension of the Community Action Groups project in 2023/24 and 2024/25.

ACTION: All to circulate the survey to their networks.

4. Partner Updates

Adam reported that South Hams District Council is recruiting into a new post of Climate Change Officer.

Donna said that Beaford Arts have been working on climate engagement in northern Devon. The project is looking at how climate is impacting people already.

ACTION: Donna to share details with Charlotte for sharing further.

Lucinda announced that the Connect Plymouth project has started providing more electric vehicle chargers and electric bikes across the city.

Louise reported that the South West Police Procurement Board has approved the Sustainable Procurement Policy.

John said that East Devon District Council has endorsed the Plant Based Treaty

Appendix 1: Project Progress Report

Period: February to March 2023

Status Indicator Key:  

🔴 [RED] = Significant issue that requires Response Group intervention;  

🟠 [AMBER] = Minor issue that will initially be managed by the secretariat, but the Response Group should be aware;  

🟢 [GREEN] = No issue.  

1. Partnership Update

1.1 General Project Communications 🟢 [GREEN]

1.1.1 Following

Growth rate remains positive on all channels except Twitter. This minor decline of 0.2% is expected to be due to the increased presence of climate sceptics commenting on tweets.

Initial measures to counter this include an update to the Devon Climate Emergency website homepage to address misinformation being spread, and an upcoming paid social media campaign to raise awareness of the project’s aims.

We are on track to meet our target of 10,000 followers across all platforms by the middle of summer.

Line graph showing DCE Online Communications Following. All lines except Twitter are increasing
Figure 1.1. DCE Social Media Following
1.1.2 Campaigns and Projects

Business Engagement 🟠 [AMBER]

A slide deck aimed at business has been prepared. The LEP and South West Business Council representatives have provided feedback. Initial feedback is that the draft slide deck may be useful to expand the concepts of the Devon Carbon Plan, but a one sheet flyer version could also be useful to attract the attention of people who do not have the time to read the slide deck in full. The idea will be discussed and developed this month.

County Show 2023 🟢 [GREEN]

  • Discussions continue around DCE’s presence at the 2023 Devon County Show, taking place from Thursday 18th May to Saturday 20th May at Westpoint, Exeter.
  • DCE have plans to showcase the work of the Net Zero Visions project. Acclaimed creative professionals have worked with Devon communities to produce positive ‘Visions’ of their local area as net-zero by 2050. The Visions produced include murals, animations, illustrations, computer games and more.
  • The DCE marquee will be decorated with posters of some of the completed Visions, and copies of the associated book compiling the work of the Net Zero Visions project will be available. Visitors will be able to try out the Net Zero Visions game on laptops.
  • An ‘art station’ for children to draw their own Vision will be available. These Visions will be displayed together as the Show progresses and added to the DCE website.
  • A tombola-style competition will run throughout the Show with one prize available per day for anyone who pledges to reduce their emissions and sign up to the DCE newsletter. These prizes could be art kits for winners to take home on the day.
  • Four or five members of the Devon Youth Parliament (DYP) will attend on the Saturday to encourage young people to visit the marquee and create their own Vision at the art station, and they may contribute to content produced for social media and the website. We have also asked the DYP to provide feedback on ideas for competition prizes.

Net-Zero Visions Curriculum Material 🟢 [GREEN]

Devon County Council has collaborated with the University of Plymouth to fund the preparation of a school curriculum pack aimed at teachers for young people to design a net-zero vision for their community. This will be finished by the end of April and made available to all schools.

Devon-Wide Community Engagement 🟢 [GREEN]

The design and scoping work is underway, being led by Devon County Council. This is starting with research during March and April that will meet with a selection of community organisations across the county to understand the gaps in community support that need filling by the project. This will be used to design the support programme for 2023/24, which will be an extension of the Community Action Group initiative.  An additional extension is being planned for delivery from April 2024.

1.2 Partners’ Notable Activity

Activity is recorded centrally on the Taking Action pages of the Devon Climate Emergency website.

  • DEFRA funding obtained by Devon County Council will expand the Future Farming Resilience programme to cover Devon, Somerset, Dorset, Cornwall, and the Isles of Scilly.
  • Torbay Council and Fernbank Advertising are working together to replace Torbay bus shelters with new Eco Living Roof bus shelters.
  • A draft Exeter Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan (LCWIP) is now open for public consultation.
  • More houses in Exeter will have access to dedicated food waste collections after the latest rollout to properties in St Loyes.
  • Plymouth City Council have agreed a £2.5 million investment into smart street lighting, which will help to cut carbon emissions.
  • During the first three months of Bin-It 123 services, Mid Devon’s recycling rates have increased to 56.56%, as compared to 52.02% during the same period in 2021/22. 

1.3 New Governance Structure 🟢 [GREEN]

Following a thorough review, a proposal was presented to the Response Group at its meeting on 10th January 2023. This was agreed and will be implemented. It will be kept under review and amended as necessary.

Current activity of the Secretariat is determining how the online reporting platform will work, and continuing conversations with existing groups and networks that will have a role in the oversight of actions. The Net-Zero Task Force membership is advising us who will stay on as it transitions into a Climate Task Force (incorporating adaptation issues) so that the process of receiving nominations for people covering specific experience and knowledge gaps can be started. Professor Patrick Devine-Wright has stepped-down as chair, but will remain a member of the new Climate Task Force.

2. Devon Carbon Plan Update 🟢 [GREEN] 

Partners, as well as organisations beyond the partnership, are now encouraged to endorse the Plan through their governance arrangements. Organisations that have endorsed so far are:

  • Dartmoor National Park Authority
  • Devon County Council
  • East Devon District Council
  • Devon Association of Local Councils
  • Plymouth City Council
  • Mid Devon District Council
  • Devon Wildlife Trust
  • Torridge District Council
  • Torbay Council
  • Exeter City Council
  • North Devon District Council
  • South Hams District Council
  • Teignbridge District Council
  • Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership

West Devon Borough Council has noted the ambition and objectives set out within the Devon Carbon Plan, and will revise its Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan and assess the financial and resource implications required to show how it would contribute to delivering the Devon Carbon Plan.

3. Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Climate Adaptation Plan 🟢 [GREEN] 

The secretariat presented the process of preparing the Adaptation Plan to the Exe Estuary Management Partnership and the Torbay Climate Forum in early March.

Comments have been received from partners on the pre-consultation draft. The remaining stages are:

  • 13/3 – 23/03/2023: RSK review comments and update Adaptation Strategy
  • 24/03/23: RSK handover final draft of Adaptation Strategy
  • 27/03 – 05/05/23: Partner organisations have 6 weeks to sign-off draft Adaptation Strategy for consultation (using local governance arrangements preferred by each partner)
  • 08/05 – 02/06/23: Four week public consultation
  • 05/06 – 14/07/23: Six weeks processing consultation results and amending the strategy
  • 2023 August CIG meeting: review amended Adaptation Strategy (may be July meeting if fewer consultation responses are received than anticipated)
  • Autumn 2023: Take the amended Adaptation Strategy to partner organisations for endorsement

The consultation will provide a set of ‘Quick Read’ versions for people who don’t need the detail. Online advertising, a webinar and physical drop-in events are being planned.

4. Devolution Update

Devolution Deal for Devon, Plymouth and Torbay moves a step closer – News

5. Summary Comments

  • Partners continue to implement the Devon Carbon Plan, and support available to communities to act will increase from May 2023.
  • The consultation draft of the Adaptation Plan is being prepared following feedback from the partnership.
  • New governance arrangements are being implemented.
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