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Tactical Group minutes 15 July 2019

Devon Climate Emergency Tactical Group minutes of meeting 15 July 2019.
Download a PDF version of the minutes here.


Harry Barton, Natural Devon and Devon Wildlife Trust
Doug Eltham, Devon County Council (Chair)
Drew Powell, South Hams and West Devon Councils
Andy Seaman, University of Exeter
John Golding, East Devon District Council
Sarah Higgins, North Devon District Council
Tom James, University of Exeter
Nicki Collas, Devon and Cornwall Police
Patrick Devine-Wright, University of Exeter
Richard Merrifield, Public Health Devon

Apologies (input via email)

Alex Gandy, Dartmoor National Park Authority
Hugh McCann, University of Exeter
James Szymankiewicz, Natural Devon
David Rose, South West Water

Workstream Interaction

The Tactical Group noted that there will need to be interaction between the Climate Impacts Group (leading on adaptation) and the Net-Zero Task Force (leading on mitigation); the Stakeholder Map shows the workstreams as separate.

At the moment, this Tactical Group provides an opportunity for Climate Impacts Group and Net-Zero Task Force coordinators to exchange information. As the project progresses and once the Task Force is operational, interaction between the two will need to be more frequent.

ACTION: Keep interaction between the two Climate Impacts Group and the Net-Zero Task Force under review.

ACTION: Nicki Collas to discuss with Paul Netherton how the carbon mitigation agenda can be represented at key deliberation points during the Climate Impacts Group work plan.

It was also discussed that additional resources are likely to be required to take the Climate Impacts Group activity beyond its current work plan to November.

Roles for the Net-Zero Task Force

Doug Eltham had circulated draft role descriptions for a member and the chair of the Net-Zero Task Force to the Group. The conversation started around these drafts.

It was AGREED to incorporate the following into the descriptions:

  • It may not be possible to achieve consensus
  • Opinions must be accompanied by facts, research and professional judgement
  • Exchange of information between the Task Force and the Climate Impacts Group
  • Responsibility to inform others of the climate response process
  • Identify which time commitments would be obligatory, and which would be discretionary.

ACTION: Doug Eltham to update the role descriptions accordingly.

It was further AGREED that a vice-chair will be needed.

ACTION: Consider who could perform the role of vice-chair when nominating members of the Task Force.

Nominees for the Net-Zero Task Force

A list of potential nominees was discussed that had been compiled via email discussion with all members of the Tactical Group. Focus was paid to ensuring that different decarbonisation themes will be represented whilst keeping the Task Force to twelve members.

The Group discussed the credibility of the ratification process for members of the Task Force and particularly whether broader input from beyond the Tactical Group organisations should be sought. It was AGREED that the use of the Tactical Group to nominate individuals to be recommended to the Response Group provides a substantial opportunity for appropriate specialists to be identified because 25 separate, democratic organisations will have had the opportunity to be involved in the appointment process. Operating a competitive appointment process would extend the 18-month timetable for the Devon Carbon Plan.

Youth representation on the Task Force was discussed. It was AGREED that the Task Force’s role is to use its specialist knowledge and experience to ensure that all relevant issues are explored through the thematic hearings and sessions of the citizen’s assembly and therefore it will be more appropriate for youth representation during the deliberative stages of the plan-making process rather than on the Task Force.

Update from the Climate Impacts Group

Neil Hamlyn of Devon and Cornwall Police was unable to attend the meeting.

ACTION: Nicki Collas to arrange with Neil Hamlyn for a brief update on activity to be circulated to the Tactical Group.

Next Steps

ACTION: Doug Eltham will contact nominees to understand the likelihood that they would accept an invitation from the Response Group to join the Task Force.

A list of nominees to invite to join the Task Force will be recommended to the Response Group at its next meeting on the 30 July.

Any Other Business

It was AGREED that the Terms of Reference for the Task Force should state how decisions how will be made. This will be by consensus where possible and if not by a majority vote where the Chair will have an additional casting vote.

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