Environmental Performance Highlight Report April – July 2022

This report provides a quarterly update on Devon County Councilโ€™s (DCCโ€™s) corporate Environmental Performance programme that implements the Environmental Policy. The report is split into topics and gives a short update on the individual projects we are running to improve environmental performance.


April 2022 – July 2022

Project Colour Key

Each project is assigned a colour to indicate its current status. The key is as follows:

Green ๐ŸŸข โ€“ Project is performing well. There may be minor issues that do not affect project viability or timescales significantly.

Amber ๐ŸŸ  โ€“ Issues have arisen that affect the time, cost or scope of the project. However, these can be dealt with by the Environmental Performance Management Group. The Environmental Performance Board should be notified.

Red ๐Ÿ”ด โ€“ Significant issues that cannot be handled solely by the Environmental Performance Management Group. The Environmental Performance Board must be engaged to assess the situation.


Corporate Building Retrofit [Green ๐ŸŸข ]

Target: Retrofit 3 buildings by March 2023 to save 93 tCO2e per year. Current projection is 9 buildings and 405 tCO2e due to unexpected funding opportunities from government.

Zero Carbon Buildings Phase 1 – Works in final stages at Abbey Rise, Lucombe House and St Michaels. Great Moor House continuing. Taw View external wall insulation is likely to go ahead by doing the work out of hours. 359 tCO2e per year reduction.

Zero Carbon Buildings Phase 2 โ€“ Retrofit of Rifford Rd, Newholme, Rosalind House, and Orchard House has been delayed from April to September. Works will conclude by December. 46 tCO2e per year reduction.

County Farmhouses Retrofit [Green ๐ŸŸข]

35 of 68 dwellings have been improved. A further 8 are currently undergoing improvement works leaving a further 25 dwellings in the programme.

Corporate Renewables [Green ๐ŸŸข]

Target: 400kW installed by March 2023. Current projection is 863kW.

Solar PV on salt barns – Contracts awarded for Tiverton, Ivybridge and South Molton depots, totalling 113kW. Await kick off meeting.

Solar panels installed at St Michaels, Great Moor House and Abbey Rise with Taw View expected to complete in October. Installations commencing in September at Rifford Rd, Newholme, Rosalind House, and Orchard House. Total of about 200kW.

Solar car ports at County Hall, Taw View and Sowton Park & Ride – Awaiting confirmation of Activity Schedule for Invitation to Tender and can then be advertised to the market. This will provide a detailed design that can then be submitted with the planning application. All costs need to be defrayed by 30th June 2023, so the timescale is tight. Expected to provide 550kW.

The business case for purchasing renewable energy from community schemes via synthetic power purchase agreements needs updating following feedback from finance. Work has started on this.

Street Lighting [Green ๐ŸŸข]

Target: Retrofit 100% of lighting with LED lamps by March 2023.

Work is ongoing to schedule but last quarterโ€™s data was too optimistic. We reported 61,000 of the 79,000 lamps having been replaced, but new data says its 54,400.

Schools Estate [Amber ๐ŸŸ ] (not reported in carbon footprint)

Okehampton Special School new-build โ€“ the carbon offsetting requirements are still being finalised. Subsequently it can be decided if offsetting is a viable option.

West-Exe Nursery School – solar PV has been installed.

Bishops Nympton Primary School – additional external insulation had been expected to be installed from January 2022 but the contractor pulled out. This has been reprogrammed for the summer holidays

2022/23 Maintenance programme has been approved by Cabinet. We will look at options for small-scale, practical enhancements to improve energy performance with this funding. Where we have failing boiler plant, lower carbon options are being looked at, including hybrid heat pumps. Village-wide electricity distribution network capacity has been a problem in rural locations for heat pump solutions.


County Council Travel Plans for Strategic Work Locations [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

Majority of staff are continuing to work remotely and therefore the implementation of the Travel Plans is taking stock of what this means for how our strategic work locations will be used post COVID.

Electric Vehicles and Charging [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

Visitors and Staff

Deletti will provide 6 charging bays available for staff (and public) use at County Hall, Great Moor House and Taw View. June 2023 at the latest.


Target: 25 electric vehicles in the fleet by March 2023. Total electric vehicles in the fleet is currently 6.

Procurement of 12 replacement vehicles is underway. Delivery is expected by September due to delays in the supply chain.

Installations for 8 chargeposts (providing 16 charging bays) for fleet vehicles at Ivybridge, Great Moor House, Avocet Rd and Taw View depots were expect to be completed by end of July. Works have started. This is now expected by October.

A second phase of 9 chargeposts (providing 18 charging bays) for fleet vehicles at Great Moor House, County Hall, Rydon Lane, Avocet, Taw View and Chelston is being developed for delivery in 2022/23 to accompany a further 10 vehicles due to be ordered this year.[On the agenda for this Board meeting]. However the vehicle purchase may be cancelled because delivery would not be until April 2023, and it is uncertain whether the budget will be available next financial year.

Sowton Fleet Depot: Feasibility work has started on developing a depot at Sowton Park and Ride for the charging of minibuses as they are converted to electric. The final proposal for agreement should be completed by the Autumn.

Waste and Resources

Establish a new Reuse Policy [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

No further progress this quarter โ€“ need to understand how buildings will be used in the future.

Establish a waste/recycling data management system [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

No further progress this quarter. The waste analysis, to look at the composition of the refuse from County Hall, was planned for March 2020, has been postponed until we know more about how buildings will be used after COVID.

Procurement and Commissioning

Net-Zero Supply Chain Strategy [Green ๐ŸŸข]

The draft Net-Zero Supply Chain Strategy was considered by the Climate Change Standing Overview Group of the Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Scrutiny Committee in July. The Strategy will progress to Cabinet in October.

Highways, Development and Infrastructure Activity [Green ๐ŸŸข]

Managing service-wide carbon data
A webform was launched on 1st July 2022. Carbon reporting tool – Roads and transport (devon.gov.uk) to capture data from contractors.

Internal webinars and training have been held to upskill DCC officers in June 2022.

External webinars (virtual) have and continue to be held with contractors throughout July 2022.

Data will slowly be fedback in a managed way, with volumes and refinement increasing over time.

Visualising and Sharing the Data
A data lake and linked Power BI dashboards are being developed. These have been derived from business need, e.g. how do we want to use the data. Further work is ongoing to match the data from the webform to the โ€˜dashboardโ€™.

The dashboards will enable internal teams, members and contractors to share one data set which is regularly updated. Teams will then use this to enable evidence based decision making for future highway works, i.e. to support road maps for carbon reduction, specification changes, policy adjustments and work toward the 2030 net zero target.

August/September 2022 โ€“ Power BI dashboards will be finalised. A large piece of work will then be undertaken to mobilise the dashboards to various audiences.

Environmental Risk

Produce a Template for Service-Level Climate Adaptation Risk Assessments [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

No further progress this quarter.

Enhance Procedures for Reporting and Learning from Environmental Incidents and Near Misses [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

No further progress this quarter.


Water Resource Management Surveys [Amber ๐ŸŸ ]

Water Resource Management Surveys completed. The development of a strategy proposal is delayed due to a focus on delivering energy projects.

Countryside and Heritage

The Countryside and Heritage Action Plan is being revised. A draft will be shared next quarter.

Support the delivery of the Devon Ash Dieback Action Plan [Green ๐ŸŸข]

Eight potential sites have been found on DCC Farms Estate. Highways are reviewing verges and orphan land having put a new communications channel in place between Highways and the Environment Group.

Carbon Offsetting

Review of Options [Green ๐ŸŸข]

A review of carbon offsetting options for meeting the net-zero by 2030 target is being prepared.

Brook Wood [Green ๐ŸŸข]

An application to the Woodland Creation Planning Grant has been successful to prepare an application to the England Woodland Creation Offer. Hoping to plant this season.