Agenda item

Work Programme

Minutes:

A proposed work programme had been circulated.

 

It was suggested that the working group consider the council’s activity around a number of key topics such as travel and transport, buildings, procurement, processes and the local plan,, and then consider the wider issues of reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the Borough.

 

Issues raised included::

·         Funding – reference was made to the referendum to be undertaken by Warwick where residents would be consulted about an increase in council tax to provide a fund to allow the council to address and tackle climate change measures

·         Potential for the use of clean hydrogen and measures required to make hydrogen useable – reference was also made to the projects being undertaken by Keele University

·         Workplace Parking Levy – example Nottingham

·         Developing technology and investment options

 

It was agreed that the first priority for review would be the council’s activity around travel and transport, including vehicles and staff travel.  This would include:

·         fleet renewal procurement and infrastructure requirements,

·         staff travel including patterns of travel, numbers of miles travelled, CO2 emissions – to include private and fleet vehicles

·         installation of EV charge points

·         taxi licensing – potential for moving to EVs, timescales, policy implications – probable referral to Licensing Committee to make recommendations back to this group in due course

 

The second priority area is buildings – to include council buildings and housing stock in terms of energy efficiency and green energy.

 

The third priority areas is to consider investment opportunities.

 

Reference was made to the upcoming review of the local plan and the need to identify how climate change impacts on the local plan.  Further clarification was also requested around the limitations on local authorities powers within the planning process.  A briefing paper would be circulated.

 

Details of any changes to grass cutting schedules was requested and members were informed that mowing was being reduced on verges maintained by the borough council to allow a greater abundance of wildflowers.  No changes to the DCC schedule had been advised.

 

It was requested that officers provide members with a list of recommended reading to allow preparation for the topics to be scrutinised.

 

Consideration was given to the use of experts to advise on process.  It was agreed that expert witnesses be invited to advise as required and that a representative of the High Peak Green Network be invited to observe meetings of this group, and to be given an opportunity to provide members with an update relevant to the topic being discussed at each particular meeting.

 

RESOLVED:

 

1.         The priority areas for scrutiny to date be:

1.         Council Activity in relation to travel and transport, and to also include wider issues such as the installation of EV charge points and taxi licensing issues (during March)

2.         Buildings – energy efficiency and green energy to include housing stock (during April)

3.         Energy Investment Opportunities (during May)

 

2.         A briefing paper on the impact of climate change on the local plan, and an explanation of the council’s powers within the planning process be circulated;

 

3.         a recommended reading list be circulated to members;

 

4.         That a representative of High Peak Green Energy Network be invited to observe meetings of the Working Group and to give an update on the topic relevant to each meeting;

 

5.         Expert advisors be invited to attend as appropriate.