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Tactical Group Meeting Minutes, 7th June 2022


Doug Eltham, Devon County Council 

Charlotte Brown, Devon Climate Emergency 

Emily Reed, Devon Climate Emergency  

John Amosford, Public Health Devon

Iain Miller, University of Plymouth 

Catherine Causley, East Devon District Council

Adam Williams, South Hams and West Devon Councils 

Alice Gent, Exeter City Council

William Elliott, Teignbridge District Council 

Lucinda Brook, Plymouth City Council 

Jacqui Warren , Torbay Council 

David Rose, South West Water 

Jason Ball, Mid Devon District Council 


Louise Sawyer, Devon and Cornwall Police

Harry Barton, Devon Wildlife Trust

Donna Sibley, Torridge and North Devon District Councils

Sara Gibbs, Public Health Devon 

Chris Greener, Devon County Council 

Emmanuelle Marshall, Plymouth City Council 

Andy Seaman, University of Exeter 

Alex Gandy, Dartmoor National Park Authority 

Victoria Hatfield, Exeter City Council 

John Golding, East Devon District Council 

Jo Pearce, Exeter City Council 

1. Minutes of previous meeting

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

2. Project Progress Report

2.1 Project Communications

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

2.2 Updates from the Net Zero Task Force

Emily Reed provided an update reflecting Section 2 of the Progress Report appended to these minutes.

Regarding the recently-redrafted Economy and Resources section of the Devon Carbon Plan, Jacqui asked if the Devon County Council Waste Management Team were signed-up to the municipal waste recycling target. Doug said they are, and it reflects the target included in the Devon and Torbay Waste and Resources Strategy.

Lucinda requested further information about this section and asked to meet with the secretariat for a deeper discussion.

ACTION: Doug to arrange a meeting with Lucinda to discuss the Economy and Resources section of the Devon Carbon Plan.

2.3 Updates on the Climate Impacts Group

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

3. Governance of the Delivery of the Devon Carbon Plan

Doug reminded the Group of the proposed governance structure that will oversee the delivery of the Devon Carbon Plan.

Doug introduced a suggestion from the Net-Zero Task Force to simplify the structure, which is to remove the Multi-Theme Board and instead ensure that the members of this Board sit on the Response Group, where they can have the same conversation with a wider audience of partners.

Following a discussion it was AGREED that the removal of the Multi-Theme Board is a good idea and should be presented to the Response Group as a suggestion.

John requested that health & equality knowledge is present on each of the Theme Boards.

ACTION: Emily to incorporate health & equality knowledge into the skills specifications for each of the Theme Boards.

Jacqui said that she would be pleased to share her experience of the Leeds and Yorkshire & Humberside Climate Change Commissions, which are similar to the proposed Devon Climate Change Forum.

ACTION: Emily to arrange a meeting with Jacqui to discuss the role of the Devon Climate Change Forum.

Lucinda asked whether this Tactical Group will continue following the publication of the Devon Carbon Plan. The Group AGREED that the networking opportunity provided by this Group is important and should continue, even if it is not formally part of the governance arrangements.

ACTION: Doug to consider where the Tactical Group should fit in the governance arrangements.

4. Electric Vehicle Experience Sharing

The Group dedicated the remaining time to a discussion about partners’ experience of introducing electric vehicles into their fleets.

Doug reported that Devon County Council has 7 vehicles in its fleet currently with a further 11 on order since November 2021. The delivery of these continues to be delayed due to problems in vehicle supply-chains. Chargers have been installed for these already.

Jacqui said that Torbay Council is funded its own Green Fleet Review, which is underway.  They are talking to Western Power about charger locations. Initially they’ll work with teams that are keen for their fleet vehicles to be replaced. New taxis in Torbay from 2030 will be electric.

Will advised the Group that Teignbridge District Council is preparing a depot strategy to consider consolidating vehicles and teams into fewer locations to make electric vehicles more viable. 70% of the fleet is over 7.5 tonnes, which is currently difficult to electrify.

Iain reported that the University of Plymouth is looking at electric options for when the lease of their existing vehicles comes to an end. However the supply chain is reporting that vehicles will not be available before Christmas. Prices being quoted are high in comparison to fossil fuel options.

Adam advised that South Hams and West Devon Councils are completing an Energy Saving Trust Green Fleet Review. Like Will, looking at depot enhancements. Two electric vans are on order. Grid issues have been encountered and so trickle charging will be used initially.

David Rose said that South West Water have 800 vehicles. Four electric vehicles have been trialled in the fleet and a further 50 are expected this year. Charging points are currently being installed. They are also looking at Hydrotreated Vegetable Oil fuels and using their own biomethane.

Jason Ball advised that Mid Devon District Council is replacing vehicles with electric alternatives as they come up for renewal. They have 10 electric vehicles on order.

Alice reported that Exeter City Council’s electric Refuse Collection Vehicles are arriving in a couple of weeks’ time.

Appendix 1: Project Progress Report

Period: May to June 2022 

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 was 1% over the past month. Charlotte Brown, the project’s new Climate Engagement Officer, will be developing content to get the following increasing at a faster rate.

Figure 1.1. DCE Social Media Following


1.1.2 Campaigns

County Show

  • Plans are developing. The focus will be on resources in partnership with Recycle Devon, highlighting the work of community action groups on repair cafes and share sheds.

Cycling campaign in September

  • Collaboration with Active Devon, Travel Devon & Devon CC’s Environment Group to deliver a month-long campaign around cycling this September
  • There will be community rides lead by community cycling groups, development of re-usable assets and opportunities for cycle confidence training

Devon-Wide Community Engagement

  • Collaboration with Active Devon, Travel Devon & Devon CC’s Environment Group to deliver a month-long campaign around cycling this September
  • There will be community rides lead by community cycling groups, development of re-usable assets and opportunities for cycle confidence training
1.1.3 Future Campaigns

Cycling campaign in September 

  • Collaboration with Active Devon, Travel Devon & Devon CC’s Environment Group to deliver a month-long campaign around cycling this September 
  • There will be community rides lead by community cycling groups, development of re-usable assets and opportunities for cycle confidence training 

Devon-Wide Community Engagement 

At its latest meeting in May, the Community Engagement Sub-Group heard from Devon Communities Together about its Asset-Based Community Development model. The Sub-Group learned that the approach is very similar to the Community Action Groups model run by Devon CC. The Sub-Group has nominated Devon County Council and Plymouth City Council to bring a proposal back to them to enhance this activity across Devon. A meeting occurred on the 10th June to progress this.

Separately, Plymouth City Council has submitted conglomerate application between six partners to the Local Government Association’s Behavioural Insights Programme to receive funding to trial a behaviour change intervention about home energy efficiency.

1.2 Partners’ Notable Activity

Activity is recorded centrally on the Taking Action pages of the Devon Climate Emergency website. Lots of activity to report this month!

  • University of Exeter has received £943k from Research England to decarbonise a new research facility.
  • The University of Exeter is part of an exciting new partnership that will help decarbonise the electricity system in Great Britain and accelerate progress towards Net Zero.
  • New study shows benefits of floating offshore wind for the south west.

2. Net Zero Task Force Updates

2.1 Devon Carbon Plan ? [GREEN] 

The Economy and Resources section of the Plan has been redrafted and circulated to partners to identify any remaining fundamental issues or inaccuracies. Comments need to be received by the secretariat by the end of June.

The Centre for Energy and Environment at the University of Exeter has started re-modelling the Action Diagrams.

We remain on schedule to have the Devon Carbon Plan available for organisations to consider adopting from the end of August 2022. 

2.2 Citizens’ Assembly Resolutions ? [GREEN] 

The full consultation report is online, having been signed-off by the Response Group in May. The partnership’s proposals will be incorporated into the final Devon Carbon Plan. 

3. Climate Impacts Group Update ? [AMBER]

The evaluation of the tender to recruit a consultant to help prepare the Adaptation Plan has completed. Plymouth City Council assisted with the evaluation. The successful contractor will be notified imminently.

The Adaptation Strategy is expected to be completed within 6 months of awarding the tender

4. Devolution Update

We continue to wait for a response from government on the first application stage. Doug Eltham has been asked by Team Devon to start developing the ideas submitted in the application into fuller proposals. This is going to need external support, which is currently being explored. The additional detail is required by the end of July. Partners will be approached over the next 6 weeks to assist with this.

5. Summary Comments

  • Partners continue to implement the Interim Carbon Plan.
  • The consultation report on the partnership’s response to the Devon Climate Assembly has been published.  
  • The final version of the Devon Carbon Plan continues to be prepared for its August deadline.
  • The tender to recruit a contractor to assist with the Adaptation Plan is being evaluated.
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