First step taken in bid to turn Devon carbon neutral

The first step in Devon’s journey towards becoming carbon neutral was taken yesterday (Monday) when the county’s Net-Zero Task Force met for the first time.

The team of environmental experts, academics, community representatives and business leaders have volunteered their time for free to deliver the environmental aspiration.

County council bosses have committed £250,000 to deliver the Devon Carbon Plan and a Citizen’s Assembly.

Once completed, the plan will provide a blueprint detailing how the county can accelerate its journey to become carbon neutral – and what Devon must do to make this possible.

It will also set out the earliest credible date that should be set for net-zero emissions.

One of the first tasks is to identify the level of emissions produced in Devon.

The Task Force also heard that the final report by Exeter University on how the Citizen’s Assembly will be organised will be delivered by December.

Patrick Devine-Wright, chairman of the Net Zero Task Force and professor in human geography at the University of Exeter, said: “The science is clear that our planet is warming at an alarming rate and our actions individually and collectively will make a difference to the future of our planet and society – for better or for worse.

“It is vital that we work together across organisations and communities to address the biggest challenge of our age.
“I’m honoured to chair the Devon Net Zero Task Force which will bring together experts and citizens to work on the urgent actions that will reduce the county’s carbon emissions to net-zero.

“I strongly believe that there are opportunities to improve our personal wellbeing and to strengthen our communities through environmental action.

“Wherever you live in Devon and whatever your background, you can make a difference. I hope through the Citizen’s Assembly, expert hearings and public consultation, we can engage people from all walks of life to tackle the climate emergency and create a carbon plan for Devon.”

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