WPEG CLIMATE CHANGE TASK GROUP
                                       TUESDAY 20TH MARCH 2012, 10:00 – 12:00
                                               ROOM A1-04, COUNTY HALL
     Attendees: - John Bryson (University of Birmingham) (Chair), Elizabeth Alston (Worcestershire County Council), Heather Lammas
     (Worcestershire County Council), Rachel Jones (Act on Energy), Katy Boom (University of Worcester), Elaine Halford-Bishop (Wyre
     Forest District Council), Stuart Gamble (Environment Agency), Ruth Johnson (Worcester City Council), Jonna Laine (Worcestershire
     County Council – minute taker)

     Apologies: Phil Oliver (Friends of the Earth), Katie Bruton (Worcestershire County Council), Ceridwen John (Bromsgrove and Redditch
     District Councils), Martyn Wilson (Worcestershire County Council), Rupert Brakspear (Worcestershire County Council), Sharon Buckley
     (NHS Worcestershire HQ), David Dowson (NHS Worcestershire HQ), Jenny Moreton (Wyre Forest District Council), Cherrie Mansfield
     (Wychavon District Council), Allan Warnock (Malvern Hills District Council), George Barr (West Mercia Police)

AGENDA ITEM           ACTION                                                                                                               BY WHOM
2. Minutes and        JB reminded everyone about Hannah Plant's presentation about Change Agents UK, a charity which arranges                 JB
Actions               placements for graduates looking for a job. It was noted that there is a cost involved in hiring through Change

                      JB reminded everyone about the meeting that was held in February to discuss the new WP Climate Change
                      Strategy. It was agreed that attendance of the meeting was good and all the essential organisations were                 JB

3. Worcestershire     AS had sent his apologies and asked EA to feedback on his behalf. No further news about the restructuring of         EA on behalf
Partnership:          the Partnership. EA reminded that WPEG has been asked to identify several indicators which should relate to its         of AS
                      key priorities, Climate change likely to be one of them.

                      A report relating to areas of highest need was taken to WP Board meeting last Monday. AS has asked RJ to
                      attend the next WPEG meeting to share her experiences of successful home energy efficiency actions in Wyre
                      Forest and Wychavon. RJ noted that in Wychavon where there are pockets of areas of highest need 1,500
                      households have been approached. The actions taken have included door-knocking campaigns giving people
                      energy advice and information about services that available to them. RJ highlighted that the approach is labour
                      intensive but highly successful, and has potential to work in other districts too. Malvern is about to take up the
                      approach. KB noted that if Worcester takes it up, it would be beneficial to link the work to the Big Lottery Fund
                      bid, getting students involved in the project. JB told the group that the University of Birmingham has worked with

                     the Bishop of Birmingham on a social inclusion project and asked whether UoW could do something similar.

                     JB noted that as the future of the WP is unsure due to re-structuring, it is necessary that the new strategy has
                     more focus on Worcestershire in general than on WP.
4. For info:         HL informed that some of the Warm Homes, Healthy People funding can be carried over to next winter. The
a) Warmer            network is now working on communications plan for next year which involves training sessions for frontline staff,
Worcestershire       advertising, community engagement. The network has received free advertising space on Astons coaches. It               HL
Update HL            was agreed that this can be an effective way to reach people as the coaches travel through rural areas too. HL
                     told the group that the Warmer Worcestershire branding has now been copyrighted by Wychavon to protect it
                     from potential misuse.

                     The County Council has given all districts £40,000 for insulating homes of over 60s before the start of the Green
                     Deal. Malvern Hills has had 900 referrals and has nearly spent all the allocated money. Following from the
                     tendering process, Wychavon and Worcester have received an offer from a utility company to provide the
                     insulation measures for free in order to meet their own targets. The offer will go live next week and is available
                     for everyone rather than only over 60s. EA mentioned that Mary Unwin from Wychavon had asked whether the
                     money from the Council can be used for other purposes such as loft clearances which would enable people to
                     take up loft insulation. RJ noted the districts should think what could be done to improve park homes. Redditch
                     and Bromsgrove have had many inquires but have problems in bringing the process forward.

b) Worcestershire    EA took Green Deal report to Worcestershire Chief Executives Panel on behalf of Green Deal Project Group              EA/RJ
Green Deal Update    suggesting that a Green Deal Project Manager should be hired and a full options appraisal developed for the
RJ/EA                three suggested options. The report was also taken to WP Board which agreed to part fund the required
                     resources. It was agreed that the Board will provide 50% of the funding and of the remainder, WCC 40% and the
                     District Councils 10% each. EA informed the group that Birmingham Energy Savers have narrowed their
                     potential GD delivery partners down to four. Worcestershire has been invited to meet them with Birmingham
                     Energy Savers.

                     RJ noted that there is not much understanding of GD yet, which is why everyone seems to be watching others
                     before acting. The group agreed that there is a knowledge gap and many businesses do not understand GD and
                     its potential benefits. KB noted that there is not much training available to the businesses and potential

c) Big Lottery Bid   The Big Lottery Fund bid by the University of Worcester was unsuccessful. KB stated that the most likely reason
KB                   for this is that the Lottery does not want to fund universities but prefers community groups to apply. KB is still
                     keen to go ahead with the project and is now looking for other ways to fund it. KB welcomes funding ideas from         KB
                     others. It was noted that it is possible to bid again next year and if that is done the group should start planning
                      which organisation should place the bid. KB mentioned Worcester-based Community Food Co-op as a potential
                      lead organisation even though it is a rather new group.

d) Infrastructure &   HL updated the group about Infrastructure & Climate Resilience Study. The study was funded by Defra and
Climate Resilience    allowed WCC to develop a methodology to help the infrastructure planners to consider climate risks to key
Study – Update HL     infrastructure sectors. The HL notes that even though the methodology was initially developed for infrastructure               HL
                      planners, others can utilise the methodology too.

                      ACTION: HL to circulate a link to the study
                      To access the report visit

                      SG noted the map does not show the drought risk. SG showed the group a map by the Environment Agency with                      SG
                      the areas under drought risk in Worcestershire.

                      ACTION: SG to forward Environment Agency's drought risk maps to HL
5. Updates from
a) Letter to Acute    DD has drafted a letter to Acute Trust. The letter was displayed at the meeting. JB has not had time to revise the letter   JB for DD
Trust JB for DD       yet.

                      ACTION: JB to revise and send the letter by the next meeting.                                                                  JB
6) Climate Change
Development JB

a) Discussion of      The draft strategy has been modified based on comments made in the meeting in February. JB reminded that it was
Draft Strategy        decided that the new strategy will be shorter and more focused than the previous one. A few issues that JB requested           JB
Content               the group to especially consider included whether there is too much focus on WCC and DCs, whether the positives
                      have not been stressed enough and if the language is too negative. E.g. potential increase in tourism is real opportunity
                      for Worcs.
                      It was suggested that the strategy needs more business focus to it. JB suggested that a session could be organised to
                      discuss the priorities with local businesses.

                      It was agreed that various sections are too bullet-pointed.
ACTION: Contributors need to remove excessive bullet-points and write more in paragraph format.                             ALL section
        Actions need to be ordered by the level of influence WP has over them.                                               authors

It was noted that street lighting and its impact on the wildlife is not being mentioned in the strategy. EA informed the
group that WCC is considering introducing more LED lighting next year when LEDs are expected to be more cost
effective. JB noted that Birmingham University is utilising lamp posts in the city including technology that measures air
quality and changes to the climate. KB interested in opportunities to utilise the idea for UoW's pollen research.

ACTION: KB to contact JB in order to get in touch with the Birmingham University academics.                                     KB

JB noted the structure of the document has not been explained. It was agreed that a document map is needed.

ACTION: EA to add a paragraph explaining the structure.                                                                         EA

It was suggested that at the bottom of each page there is a 'What next/Actions' boxes.
SG suggested that it would be useful to have case studies. EA noted that some good case studies which could be used
already exist but it is not necessary to have the case studies before the consultation. EA suggested asking the partners
to send case studies as part of the consultation.

ACTION: EA to create a simple Problem? Solution? –proforma to collect case studies                                              EA

The group discussed ways to involve other organisations and the usefulness of Climate Change Pledge. The group
agreed that the current Pledge is not working. HL noted that very few organisations provide feedback after signing the
pledge. It was also suggested there might be too many pledges around, which is why 'commitment' might be more
effective than 'pledge'. A certificate stating the organisation is committed to the delivery of WP CC Strategy and giving
concrete ideas what is expected from the organisation.

ACTION: The Climate Change Pledge will be included as an agenda item for a future meeting.                                      JB

ACTION: RJ to add more information about stakeholder engagement under the Community section.                                    RJ

It was noted that currently the focus of Education section is on the UoW and WCC schools but more information on
other forms of education are needed.

ACTION: Include Lifelong learning, University of Third Age, WI and Forest Schools.

It was noted that heat pumps are becoming more and more important for people off the gas grid, which is why heat
pump technology demonstrations should be included in the action plan.

ACTION: RJ to circulate a case study Act on Energy has done on heat pump technology.                                             RJ

Summer heat is becoming a real risk. There are excess summer death figures for the UK and WM but not for Worcs.

It was noted that the Buildings and Infrastructure section requires more Worcs figures which could be done using HL's
Climate Resilience Maps and SG's drought maps. SG noted that the importance of water and the economic knock-on
effect of drought to businesses are not widely acknowledged. Also, droughts are likely to impact more people than
flooding, which is why education is a key factor in adapting to future droughts. EA noted the section does not have much
information on land use planning or infrastructure planning.

ACTION: EA to contact Dale Bristow for more comments                                                                             EA

ACTION: SG to contact Neil Thomson to discuss the potential impact Env. Agency can have on commercial                            SG

It was noted that WP has a lot of control over the carbon emissions of the public sector. Public sector plays an important
role both testing new technologies but also demonstrating the best practice.

ACTION: RJ to contact New College Bromsgrove to find out about their recent actions.                                             RJ
ACTION: KB to send University of Worcester figures to EA (student numbers, staff numbers, annual spend etc)                      KB

SG noted that a case study, possibly about land management, would be useful for the Natural Environment Section. KB
noted that UoW's Public Sector Land Management Study might be a good one to use. It was agreed that GI work done
at the County level should be better addressed and GI should be explained. The link between natural environment and
education should be noted (farm visits?). Bransford farm was given as an example of site of sustainable biomass

ACTION: SG to expand the Natural Environment section following the comments and to add an explanation of                         SG
GI. EA to ask Dale Bristow for input on Green Infrastructure                                                                     EA

It was agreed that in addition to primary indicators the strategy could have secondary indicators such as number of Eco-        ALL
Schools and uptake of GD. Key tools such as Green Deal, GI and Infrastructure & Climate Resilience Study should be           contributors
referenced throughout the document.

b) Next Steps      EA informed the group that at least 90 days consultation period is required. The partnership organisations will be          EA/HL
                   consulted but the strategy will be made available on the website to allow other interested organisations to comment. EA
                   wants to take the strategy to WPEG and WPB meetings in June. It was agreed that the strategy should go out in
                   consultation in late April. EA noted that Equality Impact Assessment might be needed.

                   Action plans exist already and new actions will be built on it. JB noted that the new WP indicators may drive the pots of   JB/EA
                   funding, which is why actions should be built around them. The indicators are likely to include: carbon emissions,
                   number of organisations incorporating adaptation measures and fuel poverty figures.

8) A.O.B.          KB: UoW organising a Question Time type of event on Friday 20th April at 3-5pm. The Climate Group are invited. The
                   theme is sustainability in its broader sense covering social and economic sustainability in addition to environmental
                   sustainability. KB inviting ideas for more speakers who could be invited. RJ recommended Peter Woodward from SWM.

                   EA: All Worcestershire libraries are aiming to become Eco-Centres. The programme is co-ordinated by Keep Britain
                   Tidy and the libraries receive support from the County Council.
                   EA informed the group about Learning for Sustainability Conference which is held at the Hive on 21st March. The
                   conference is for local schools.
9) Dates of next   A meeting will be organised in mid- or late-April to discuss the final version of the strategy before it goes out in        EA/HB
meetings           consultation.

                   The next full Climate Change group meeting is on Tuesday 15th May at 10:00am in Redditch Room at County Hall


To top