Derbyshire Dales councillors have unanimously supported a series of actions that further the District Council’s progress towards its 2030 net zero carbon emissions target.
October 2021 update
Derbyshire Dales councillors have unanimously supported a series of actions that further the District Council’s progress towards its 2030 net zero carbon emissions target.At a full council meeting onThursday 14 October, councillors backed the actions, which include a grant application for £807,116 made to the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme for energy efficiency works and low carbon heating at authority's Matlock Town Hall headquarters, Agricultural Business Centre in Bakewell and Northwood depot.
If successful, work will complete by March 2023, reducing emissions by 136.68t CO2e annually – down by 17% on the Council’s 2019/20 total.
Thursday's meeting also approved a revenue budget of up to £30,000 to fund the engagement of an expert partner to carry out a detailed feasibility study into the technical and financial viability of solar PV installations on Council land.
Other actions will include disposing of the Council's Civic Car without replacement as part of a fleet emission reductions programme, and a ‘climate change impact assessment tool’ will be trialled for reports presented to Council, providing a consistent method of assessing the impact of projects or activities on the climate.
Councillors also approved a climate change delivery plan – a working document supporting the core aims of the Council's Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan. The delivery plan will evolve as projects progress. As well as addressing the Council’s own emissions the delivery plan also seeks to set out actions in respect of supporting emissions reductions in the district.
- Delivery of further phases of the housing retrofit scheme across the district, reducing emissions and tackling fuel poverty – a grant application has been made for a further £907,500 of funding
- Funding the installation of electric points in Hall Leys Park so that event organisers do not have to rely on generators to provide power
- Organising and funding the visit of the ‘fantastic homes’ exhibition to our market towns and main villages to engage with and advise residents about domestic energy efficiency, renewables and low carbon heating
- Developing a community engagement plan – bringing together residents to discuss what collective action is possible on climate change
October 2020 update
The debate at a full meeting of the council on 8 October can be viewed again here:
In May 2019 the council declared a Climate Emergency and, in pledging to make the authority carbon neutral in the next 10 years, also called on the UK Government to provide the powers and resources to make the target possible.
Since then updates have been submitted to the council and last night consultants ClearLead Ltd presented a Climate Change Strategy and Action Plan that won the approval of all councillors.
The Action Plan sets out a potential pathway to achieving net zero in terms of the District Council’s direct emissions, outlining in broad terms the level of investment - around £2.7-million - that would be required to meet net zero and the period over which that investment would need to be made.
Last night's meeting also agreed that the council’s carbon footprint be measured and reported on an annual basis and that the programme of works required to achieve net zero by 2030 is approved and built into the Capital Programme to be considered by Council next month.
Councillors also noted the need to obtain funding to undertake the programme of works required to achieve net zero by 2030 and agreed to the recruitment of a Climate Change Officer on a 5-year fixed term contract.
The pathway to net zero identified in the Strategy is listed as:
- Energy efficiency improvements to existing facilities;
- Installation of biomass heating at Matlock Town Hall;
- Electrification of heating at 3 key facilities;
- Installation of roof mounted solar PV at 2 key facilities;
- Development of 2MW ground mounted solar PV;
- Electrification of the Council’s vehicle fleet.
"I am reassured by this report. It gives us the definitive baseline and a clear pathway to carbon neutrality by 2030. That target now looks reachable within the timeframe which is very good news, though expensive."Cllr Mike Ratcliffe, who originally took the Climate Emergency motion to the council, said:
"This a very valuable piece of work. It gives us a concrete assessment of what we need to do and it gives us the associated costs. Now these are of course are never palatable in our money-saving environment, but we need to grasp this with both hands."
View the full report [PDF]
September 2019 update
The Working Group members were Cllrs David Chapman (Chair), Richard Bright, Mark Salt, David Hughes, Peter O’Brien and Neil Buttle, with officer support to the Group being provided by the Head of Regulatory Services.
The Working Group had meet twice, and had produced an initial road map, setting out the issues and areas of work needed for the Council to work towards becoming carbon neutral by 2030, and had identified 4 priorities for early work, as follows:
- Planning policy
- Housing policy
The road map and full report can be viewed from pages 5-7 of the meeting agenda [PDF].
The Chairman of the Group advised Members that a dedicated email address would be live by the following week via the Council’s website and that administrative services, including minute-taking for the Group, were being organised. Cllr Chapman invited Members to send their suggestions/comments using the dedicated email address in due course.
In addition to the work undertaken by the District Council’s Working Group, a countywide officer group had been formed, to look specifically at climate change issues. The first meeting of this group was held on 17 September 2019, from which a Derbyshire Environment and Climate Change Framework would be developed.
View the September 2019 meeting climate change debate below:
July 2019 updateAt its meeting on 25 July 2019, the District Council considered a report asking for agreement of Terms of Reference for the formation and operation of a Climate Change Task Group, to further the decision taken by Council at its meeting on 30 May 2019 in declaring a Climate Emergency.
A Task Group was proposed to act as an advisory body to Council, to develop the District Council’s thinking and actions required to deliver upon the resolution. Terms of Reference for that Group were attached to the report, and the aims were set out in the report, based on a remit which directed the Group to focus on the District Council becoming carbon neutral by 2030.
Political proportionality was not a statutory requirement, but was recommended in this case to ensure cross Council input and support, as set out in the report.
It was moved by Councillor Richard Bright, seconded by Councillor David Chapman and RESOLVED (unanimously):
1. That the Terms of Reference set out in the Appendix to the report are approved;
2. That the following nominations be accepted to serve on the Group until the next Annual Meeting of the Council, on the basis
of political proportionality:
Conservatives: Cllrs David Chapman, Richard Bright and Mark Salt
Liberal Democrat: Cllr David Hughes
Labour: Cllr Peter O’Brien
Green/Independent: Cllr Neil Buttle
3. That attendance at formal meetings of the Task Group is classified as an Approved duty in terms of the Scheme of Members’ Allowances.
View the debate below:
May 2019 updateThe Council resolved unanimously at its meeting on 30 May 2019 the following amended Motion, originally submitted by Councillor Mike Ratcliffe and supported by Councillor Joyce Pawley, in accordance with Rule of Procedure 16:
Climate change is an existential threat. Extreme weather events have caused damage and destruction in this country and have led to deaths and displacement of thousands of people worldwide. Natural habitats, wildlife and biodiversity are in peril, not only from climate change, but they are being adversely affected by human intervention, which in turn is enhancing the effects of climate change. Scientists are warning that we have a little over a decade to implement urgent action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions before we reach a global tipping point. Action is required at international, national, local and individual level to achieve the carbon reduction levels needed.
This Council pledges to:
- Declare a Climate Emergency
- Make Derbyshire Dales District Council carbon neutral by 2030
- Call on the UK Government to provide the powers and resources to make the 2030 target possible
- Work with partners across the county and region to deliver this new goal through all relevant strategies
- Report back to Council within six months with the actions the Council will take to address this emergency.
View the debate below: