June 2019

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1. Teignbridge signs Devon Climate Declaration

Teignbridge Managing Director Phil Shears and Council Leader Cllr Gordon Hook sign the declaration

Teignbridge has backed the Devon Climate Declaration, demonstrating the authority’s commitment to leading the fight against climate change.

Leader Cllr Gordon Hook and Managing Director Phil Shears signed the declaration which sets out an ambition to tackle climate change across Devon.

By signing the document, Teignbridge has committed to supporting a raft of measures and initiatives including lobbying government to prioritise decarbonisation and to provide the resources and funding necessary to speed up the transition to becoming a carbon neutral and resilient economy and society.

Teignbridge councillors unanimously supported a Notice of Motion to declare a 'climate emergency' at Full Council on 18 April. Teignbridge was among the first authorities in Devon to make the stand. 

The authority is also part of the Devon Climate Emergency Response Group, made up of nearly 20 public and private sector organisations. The group has agreed to support urgent action on the climate emergency and coordinate in the production of a Devon Carbon Plan. The work also includes creating a ‘citizens assembly’ to ensure residents have a voice in the process too.

Cllr Gordon Hook, Leader of Teignbridge District Council said:

“Teignbridge led the way in declaring a climate change emergency with councillors signing up to the declaration in April. Since then we have united with partners to strengthen our position, pool resources and speak with one voice so we can effect positive change together.

“The signing of the declaration is much more than symbolic; it is a real demonstration of our commitment in doing our bit to make our world a more sustainable place for the generation that follows us, and those that follow them.

“Local organisations and communities cannot do it alone - national government plays a key role in many of the policy areas that are vital to cutting emissions and adapting to climate change. We call upon them to prioritise decarbonisation and work with us to become a zero carbon and resilient economy.”

Teignbridge has committed to reducing its own environmental impact through its Council Strategy project ‘zero heroes’. This includes monitoring energy consumption from council buildings, using renewable energy and more energy efficient equipment in its buildings, reducing waste and improving recycling.

Teignbridge has installed solar panels on the roof of Market Walk Shopping Centre and Teignbridge Business Centre, Heathfield. It has phased out single-use plastic cups at its Forde House head office, installed video conferencing facilities to reduce travel and improved office recycling and waste facilities.

Climate change is recognised as a cross-cutting strategic issue that impacts on all of Teignbridge’s Council Strategy projects and as such has its own Portfolio Holder lead, Cllr Jackie Hook.