In her 2016 PhD thesis, Gillian Westcott examined the part played by subjective attitudes to climate change in determining the policy and actions of local authorities in South West England.
The research used interviews with officers and members of seven local authorities in the area, conducted during the years 2010 to 2013. While much has changed since then, the views expressed could well be relevant to today’s community energy workers and others who engage with local authorities on climate change issues. Read more here.
All domestic and commercial buildings in the UK available to rent or buy must have an Energy Performance Certificate. The Certificate provides details on the energy efficiency of a building, gives it a rating from A (very efficient) to G (inefficient), and tells you what you can do to improve that rating. It is valid for 10 years.
ACT has analysed certificates since 2008
An EPC lets the person
who will use the building know how costly it will be to heat and light, and
what its carbon dioxide emissions are likely to be.
In the Teignbridge area
EPCs have been issued for more than 37,000 of around 54,000 dwellings. Nearly
two-thirds of these (62% or 23,137) are rated D or worse, with just 58 rated A.
Only 27 dwellings have zero or negative carbon emissions, but of those, 10 are
new estate houses built by Redrow in Kingsteignton. This shows it can be done
so why aren’t all new build estate houses zero carbon? Most have a B or C
Total emissions from
dwellings rated D or below currently amount to 127kt of CO2, against 31kt for
the higher rated ones.
The top recommendations
in Teignbridge EPCs for improving energy efficiency are to install: solar
panels (29,642 certificates), solar hot water heating (26,591), low energy
light bulbs (24,075), a new condensing boiler (11,994). There are also various insulation
If all the suggested
improvements were carried out, only 5,949 dwellings (16%) would be rated D or worse and emissions
per dwelling would drop by nearly half, from 4.23 tonnes to 2.37 tonnes. But
those low rated dwellings would still account for around a third of CO2
EPC data is a useful starting point for Parish and Town councils that have declared a climate emergency. It will help to set carbon targets and implement initiatives designed to reduce emissions. For more details, and maps showing current and potential CO2 emissions by parish, please visit https://actionclimateteignbridge.org/index.php/energy-performance-certificates-epcs/
ACT has met Jackie Hook, TDC climate emergency portfolio holder and David Eaton, climate emergency lead officer, on several occasions, to discuss a joint approach for delivering on the TDC declaration. We have also gathered over 150 proposals for possible action from members of the community, which has been passed to the council.
The coordination group is confident that ACT can help both TDC and everyone in Teignbridge achieve the goal of net zero carbon emissions by 2025. This proposal describes ACT’s vision, mission and objectives, and proposes a partnership with the council. Finally, it provides an provisional timeline for getting the relationship established.
TDC formally accepted our role in supporting them in at their full council meeting on 24th Sept 2019.
Our full proposal can be read here.
following Notice of Motion was submitted by Councillor J Hook and
supported by Councillors Connett, Dewhirst, Hayes, G Hook, Nutley,
Parker and Wrigley.
Humans have already caused irreversible climate change, the impacts of which are being
felt around the world. Global temperatures have already increased by 1 degree Celsius from pre-industrial levels.
order to reduce the chance of runaway Global Warming and limit the
effects of Climate
Breakdown, it is imperative that we as a species reduce our CO2eq
(carbon equivalent) emissions from their current 6.5 tonnes per person
per year to less than 2 tonnes as soon as possible.
Individuals cannot be expected to make this reduction on their own. Society needs to
change its laws, taxation, infrastructure, etc., to make low carbon living easier and the new norm;
Carbon emissions result from both production and consumption;
Our current plans and actions are not enough. The world is on track to overshoot the
Paris Agreement’s 1.5 degrees Celsius limit before 2050.
IPCC’s Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 degrees Celsius,
published in October
2018, describes the enormous harm that a 2 degrees Celsius rise is
likely to cause compared to a 1.5 degrees Celsius, and told us that
limiting Global Warming to 1.5 degrees Celsius may still be possible
with ambitious action from national and sub-national
authorities, civil society, the private sector, indigenous peoples and
Local Councils around the world are responding by declaring a ‘Climate Emergency’ and
committing resources to address this emergency.
Council believes that:
governments (national, regional and local) have a duty to limit the
of Climate Breakdown, and local governments that recognize this should
not wait for their national governments to change their policies. It is
important for Teignbridge Council and other Councils to commit to
carbon neutrality as quickly as possible.
Cities and Local Authorities at all tiers are uniquely placed to lead
in reducing carbon emissions; they are well placed to help decarbonize
villages and more remote areas as they have closer links with their
Bold climate action can deliver economic benefits in terms of new jobs, economic savings
and market opportunities, as well as improved personal, social and environmental well-being for people, locally and worldwide.
Teignbridge District Council will,
Declare a ‘climate emergency’
Pledge to do what is within our powers, to make Teignbridge District carbon neutral by 2030, taking into account both production
and consumption emissions.
on Westminster to provide the powers and resources necessary for
Teignbridge District to achieve the target of becoming carbon
neutral by 2030, and to implement best practice methods to limit global
warming to 1.5C.
to Full Council within six months with an Action Plan, outlining how
the Council will address this emergency. The Action
Plan will detail the leadership role Teignbridge District will take in
promoting community, public, business and other Council partnerships to
achieve this Carbon Neutral 2030 Commitment throughout the District. The
Action Plan will also outline adequate staff
time and resources to undertake the actions to achieve the target.
To investigate all possible sources of external funding and match funding to support this commitment