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Devon Climate Emergency | August 2022

Welcome to our August Newsletter!

Positive Climate NewsThere are many actions already taking place across Devon that are successfully reducing greenhouse gas emissions and implementing the Interim Devon Carbon Plan. Here are our picks for the month.

University of Exeter and University of Plymouth Make Finals of Green Gown Awards 2022

Congratulations to The University of Exeter, The University of Plymouth and Plymouth Marjon University, who have gotten through to the finals of Green Gown Awards UK & Ireland - an award scheme which recognises the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges across the world.

The awards ceremony will take place on 8th November 2022 at Loughborough University.

A snapshot of the workshop.University of Exeter:

The University of Exeter was successful in the Student Engagement Category for its Green Futures Student Solutions programme, which dedicates £15,000 annually to student-led projects that deliver sustainable benefits for its stakeholders.

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University Of Plymouth Shortlisted At Green Gown Awards For Excellence In SustainabilityUniversity of Plymouth:

The University of Plymouth is a finalist in the Benefitting Society category for a project providing free dental treatment to those excluded from society, such as those experiencing homelessness. The project is a collaboration between the Peninsula Dental Social Enterprise (PDSE) aligned to the university’s Peninsula Dental School.

It is also shortlisted in the Research with Impact category for the university’s ‘CobBauge’ project which has been testing whether building homes with an ultra-low carbon material called ‘cob’ could be a viable way to build more sustainably.

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Success for Barnstaple Town Council's Climate Emergency Working Group at Pilton Green Man Festival

Carbon Pledge-O-MeterBarnstaple Town Council's Climate Emergency Working Group had a successful stall at the Pilton Green Man Festival on Saturday 16th July.

Members of the public were invited to make pledges on the first ever Carbon Pledge-O-Meter, inviting anyone wanting to reduce their carbon footprint to commit to taking concrete actions, such as cutting food waste, starting climate change conversations and considering more eco-friendly travel options.

24,000 Trees to Be Planted in Barnstaple Community Woodland

Two people stood in front of a fieldNorth Devon Council will be planting 24,000 new trees, expanding a community woodland in the Barnstaple area and fast-tracking progress towards their target to become net-zero by 2030.

This expansion will help to offset the Council’s carbon emissions, while also linking up three existing woodlands and expanding habitats available for local wildlife. The community will be able to help with the tree planting later in the year.

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Plastic Free North Devon Launches Sustainable Housekeeping Toolkit

Sustainable Housekeeping ToolkitPlastic Free North Devon have launched their new Sustainable Housekeeping Toolkit for cleaners, property managers and business owners in the tourist industry.

The toolkit was developed alongside entrepreneur Croyde Concierge and a collaborative workshop in March. It includes a range of ideas and tips to reduce impacts on the environment through cleaning and management processes, such as guidance on spotting greenwashing, how to make ethical choices, and how to make the most of communication with guests and businesses. As 99% of all plastic comes from fossil fuels, this toolkit's advice on reducing plastic use will help to tackle climate change by suggesting alternatives to plastic housekeeping equipment.

This forms part of the Visitor Campaign, funded by North Devon Coast AONB, which encourages the multitude of businesses and visitors in North Devon to protect the environment and make positive changes. You can find out more about the Visitor Campaign, and download the Sustainable Housekeeping Toolkit, at the link below.

Find Out More And Download The Toolkit

Growing Communities Fund to Support Projects That Benefit Devon

Hands reaching out to each otherThe Growing Communities Fund is available to provide grant awards of between £500 and £3,000 to projects that benefit Devon, including those responding to the climate emergency.

A wide range of applicants will be considered, including community groups, schools, councils, charities and more. Anyone with a project that adds value to established work, responds to an identified need, or uses innovation to improve efficiency among other benefits can apply.

Applications must be submitted online and funding used or allocated before 31 March 2023.

Find Out More And Apply

Renewable Energy and Doughnut Economics: Devon Citizen Survey

ResearchA questionnaire is being carried out by a student as part of their studies on the MSc Global Sustainability programme at the University of Exeter.

Doughnut Economics is a model aiming to change how our current economic system operates. The research project is centred around renewable energy and doughnut economics themes, in order to establish citizen energy priorities and constraints and explore how the council supports green energy storage and distribution networks. This data will aid in catalysing the transition to a 100% renewable Devon by 2050. Finally, this study will aim to investigate how Devon-community-owned renewable energy projects may contribute to the achievement of the doughnut.

For the purpose of obtaining data that is representative of everyone in Devon, we would be grateful if you could take part in this questionnaire. It should take no more than 5-10 minutes to complete. If you do not want to answer a question there will be an option to provide ‘unsure’ or to skip the question, leaving it unanswered.

The survey will be open until August 5th 2022. Find more information and take part at the link below.

Take Part

Free Trees for Landowners 2022

Free Trees SchemeThis year, Devon County Council is offering 100 ‘free tree packs’ to landowners across Devon for the forthcoming planting season. Each tree pack will contain 45 native trees and will be funded by Devon County Council’s Emergency Tree Fund, granted by The Woodland Trust. Trees planted this season (November 2022 to end of March 2023) can contribute to the Queen’s Green Canopy initiative, if landowners wish to do so.

To find out more, including how to apply for your free tree pack, click “Find Out More” below and open the ‘Free Tree Scheme’ tab.

Initial deadline for applications is 18th of September 2022 with later applications subject to availability.

Find Out More

Devon Climate Emergency Updates

RSK Appointed to Develop Adaptation Plan

An illustration of people talking while walking a dogWe are excited to announce that engineering and environmental consultancy RSK have been appointed to aid the development of the Devon, Cornwall and Isles of Scilly Adaptation Plan. The appointment has been made possible by a successful bid to the Environment Agency for funding.

The Adaptation Plan is intended to help communities across the Southwest to better understand the risks their area might face in future, as climate change increasingly affects the UK. It will also help them to adapt to these changes by identifying the parties accountable for acting on particular climate impacts and actions communities can take themselves.

RSK will work with the Climate Impacts Group, who are responsible for assessing the impacts faced in the Southwest region and reviewing current levels of community preparedness for a warmer world. RSK's appointment will help to further progress on the Adaptation Plan, including identifying priority actions for regional collaboration over the next five years, so the region can be better prepared to adapt to the consequences of climate change.

Read More About The Adaptation Plan

Net Zero Visions News and UpdatesThe commissioned artists are on their way to complete their Net Zero Visions. Each Vision will be a community's imagining of a low-carbon future for their local area, with changes such as retrofitting buildings, decarbonising transport, and re-thinking food production, waste, and energy supply.

The Visions are being created in a range of wild and wonderful mediums including animation, illustration, and even interactive games. Keep an eye out for publicly displayed Visions, like murals, being painted in your local community!

Take Part in Imagining a Future Net-Zero Devon!

Artist, Dr. Kate Crawfurd working on a Net Zero Vision on the Sustainability Hub, University of Plymouth.What might the place you live in look like in this better future? More to the point, what would you want it to look like? The Interim Devon Carbon Plan and the Devon Climate Emergency website are full of resources which show what might be achieved and how. This is a chance to learn about what is possible, as well as let your wildest imaginations off the leash.

If you have a ‘Vision’ for net-zero where you live, please send it on to us. It can take the form of a piece of art, a story, a video, or even a podcast. Submissions are welcome from individuals or groups. Visions will be hosted on the website gallery and plotted on an interactive map. Many Visions will also appear in the Net Zero Book, publication November 2022.

Together we can start to tell a different story about our collective future.

Each month between July-November 2022 two £20 vouchers (under and over 18s) will be awarded to the ‘Star’ Vision of the month. Many Visions will also appear in the Net Zero Book, publication November 2022.

To submit your Visions please click either ‘under 18 ‘or ‘over 18’ below:

Under 18s:

Over 18s:

Creatives Call

A man takes a photo of a fieldDo you work in the creative industries? Are you concerned about net zero and would like to create a positive vision of the future of where you live? Do you want to explore how your work might feed into this agenda?

We’re looking for creatives to submit their own Net Zero Vision, in any media, to join the existing commissioned artists Visions. Shortlisted entries will feature on the Net Zero Visions website and will be included in the project book. The winning submission will also receive a £500 fee.

All submissions should be received by 8 August 2022 (after this time no submissions can be accepted).

View full details, and terms and conditions, on our website.

Find Out More

Success for Net Zero Visions Community Event

Mural in PlymouthThank you to everyone who came to the Net Zero Visions community event in Plymouth on Monday 18th July!

As part of the Net Zero Visions project, acclaimed professionals in animation, illustration, interactive games, and public murals are currently working with communities to produce positive ‘Visions’ of locations across Devon as carbon net-zero in 2050.

Interested communities met with some of the commissioned creatives, including illustrator, Philip Harris, games designer company, Mutant Labs, mural painter Dr Kate Crawfurd, and award winning animator Ashley Potter and team. Through this, attendees had the opportunity to see the animation storyboards and tech in progress, and feed more of their Visions into how their towns and villages should appear in the net-zero animation. They also saw the first completed large-scale mural (on the side of the Sustainability Hub).

The event was a chance to get valuable feedback on the project so far, ensuring the final Visions can truly encapsulate what a net-zero Devon looks like for each community.

Dates for the Diary

Summer Fun Cycle FestSummer Fun Cycle Fest; Throughout August

This series of free cycle festivals will be a great day out for family and friends to discover more about cycling. You can pre-book bike maintenance and cycle confidence sessions, as well as enjoying park play sessions, arts & crafts, trying new bikes and more on the day.

They will be held in Exeter at:

Cowick Barton Playing Fields: Thursday 4th August, 1pm - 3:30pm

Wonford Playing Fields: Tuesday 9th August, 10:30am - 1pm

Hamlin Lane Playing Fields: Friday 12th August, 10:30am - 1pm

Exwick Playing Fields: Wednesday 17th August, 1pm - 3:30pm

More will be held in Cranbrook at:

Burrough Fields Road, Playing Fields: Thursday 25th August, 1pm - 3:30pm

Learn More and Pre-Book

Mark WilsonBig Bike Revival, 'Fix'; Erme Court car park, Leonards Road, Ivybridge, PL21 0SZ; Sunday 14th August 2022, 10:00am – 2:00pm

To empower people to use bikes as part for leisure or as part of their active travel routines, PL:21 Transition Town are hosting The Big Bike Revival to run a series of ‘Fix’ and ‘Learn’ sessions during August, September and October. This upcoming event will be a 'Fix' session, where you can get your bike checked for mechanical faults, free of charge. Simple problems can be fixed, and adjustments made there and then, whilst bigger problems will need referring on to local bike servicing workshops.

Register for your free place by sending an email to Mark Wilson at detailing:

  1. The date of the session you wish to book.
  2. How many bikes you would like to book in.

Rewilding in Teign ValleyRewilding Teign Valley; Embercombe

Eco retreat centre Embercombe will be welcoming people for a variety of free events looking to rewild land and communities in the Teign Valley. Events will be running from August to November.

Those running in August include:

Pond dipping and surveying: Wednesday 17th August, 10am - 12pm

Wildflower seed harvest and foraging berries: Thursday 25th August, 2pm - 5pm

Find Out More And Book Your Free Place

Event submission information

Posted in HPC Climate Change.