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Agenda item

Scrutiny Review - Overview of the Council's 2030 Net Zero Carbon Programme - To follow

Minutes:

Keith Townsend, Director of Environment and Regeneration was present for discussion of this item, and made a presentation to the Committee, during which the following main points were made

·         Climate change is clear the level of global warming related to the amount of Carbon Dioxide that human activities add to the atmosphere

·         The Climate Change Act 2008 has set the UK to achieve net zero carbon borough by 2030

·         Islington declared a Climate Emergency in June 2019 net zero carbon borough by 2030, and a draft strategy published February 2020. Special meeting held of E&R in February 2020. Consultation process from April to end July 2020 and Executive report in November 2020

·         What does this mean for Islington – developing a net Zero Carbon strategy for Islington, 4% of Islington’s carbon emissions are from our operations and buildings and 9% of gas boilers in council-owned homes are included. There are 679,600 tonnes of emissions in the borough

·         The strategy at a glance – residential buildings, Commercial and industrial buildings and infrastructure – improve the energy efficiency and reduce the level of carbon emissions of all buildings and infrastructure. Transport – reduce emissions in the borough for transport. Sustainable and affordable energy generation and supply – increase local generation of renewable heat and electricity, increase the update of affordable and renewable energy tariffs and mitigate fuel poverty. The Green Economy and Planning – deliver on net zero carbon target whilst assuring the economic success and vitality of the borough by working closely with the 18800 businesses in the borough, most of them small or micro sized. The natural environment and waste reduction and recycling – integrate ongoing activities in recycling and reducing waste and managing our natural environment

·         Our approach – identified short, medium and long term commitments and actions, and there is a need to work with partners, consult and engage extensively, have cross- Council working to support the commitments and action plan, significant development of a programme with workstreams and detailed workplans, how to engage with residents, businesses and organisations

·         Governance model in place

·         How progress can be measured – Pilot of ClimateView software – used by both Newcastle and Nottingham City Councils, visualise challenges and targets, setting targets link related ongoing or planned actions, access and adapt – for each transition target the listed actions are sufficient, insufficient or unrealistic

·         In response to a question as to whether electric boilers would be installed at the Holloway Prison development with Peabody Trust it was stated that if the member of the public wished to write to the Executive Member Housing, Councillor Ward he would respond thereon

·         In response to a question as to supplementary planning guidance changes in relation to the Net Zero Carbon strategy, it was stated that this was under consideration and being developed

·         It was stated that in relation to the ClimateView proposal that work progress would be reported back to the Committee in approximately 6 months. However, behavioural change would be needed in a number of areas, and there would need to be engagement with the community, through a communications strategy, and applying the recommendations of the recent Scrutiny Review on Behavioural Change

·         Key risks and next steps – Lack of direct control, dependency on other parties such as Government, GLA, businesses, Borough partners, residents.

·         Creating organisation momentum and capacity to deliver the programme, financial resources investment and benefits not clearly defined, developing a detailed scope and plan for each workstream in order to be clear about what we will do directly, what we could do, and what we will do to influence and work with others

·         Net Zero Carbon strategy approval – November report to Executive recommending additional capital investment, and revenue funding, required to deliver strategy, note detailed proposals for borough partner and anchor institution engagement, note role of E&R scrutiny Committee, approve officers to work on pan-London basis as part of the London Climate Change programme. Also note further work is underway to develop the scope and detail in relation to resident engagement, including a net zero carbon themed Citizens Assembly and to adopt a Net Zero Carbon strategy and Action Plan

·         Scrutiny work – 18 month E&R programme to allow for detailed scrutiny of key chapters of the strategy, regular programme update, opportunity to meet with delivery teams and detailed understanding of the workstreams to shape future scrutiny programme and have guest speakers an external experts

·         Scrutiny Work Programme – 4 February – Green Economy and Planning commitments, 8 March – Transport and Sustainable and affordable energy generation and supply commitments, 27 April – Residential Buildings, Commercial and Industrial Buildings and Infrastructure and the Natural Environment and Waste Reduction and Recycling commitments. This will support the Committee to determine its work programme for 2021/22

·         Noted that work is taking place with London Councils, and the Mayor of London to develop a climate change programme for London, and Islington will be the lead authority on energy

·         A Member stated that there is a need to ensure water conservation is included in any strategy, and a focus on solar panels to heat water. It was stated that planning policy was being looked in order to include water usage and conservation

·         A Member expressed the view that community experts should be involved, and consulted on proposals, and there is a need to consider how to engage them in future. It was stated that there would be engagement in this regard,  and that the special meeting to be held with stakeholders in February/March will seek to build on this

·         A Member stated that there is a need for the planning process to complement the Net Zero Carbon strategy, and it was stated that there were opportunities through the Local Plan, and supplementary planning guidance to influence this

·         In response to a question about the need to engage TfL, it was stated that the Government bailout of TfL, and the Department of Transport had given a block funding grant to TfL and it was hoped that this would assist in developing local schemes

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the scrutiny review programme be approved, and that water conservation be added to the waste/recycling work stream

 

The Chair thanked Keith Townsend for his presentation         

 

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