Agenda item

2022 2023 Carbon Footprint Report

Report by the Sustainability and Climate Officer (attached)


The Committee considered a report by the Sustainability and Climate Officer (circulated previously), regarding the 2022 to 2023 Carbon Footprint of the Council.


The Sustainability and Climate Officer highlighted the following:

·         There was no legal need to report on the Council’s Carbon footprint and no specific guidance on what to include or exclude when reporting.

·         As a signatory to the Devon Climate Emergency declaration North Devon Council had agreed to “publicly report our Carbon emissions annually in accessible formats”.

·         A Carbon footprint was divided into Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions.

·         Scope 1 was direct emissions of fuel we burnt on site i.e. the oil in our boilers to heat the building and the fuel used to run the fleet vehicles.

·         Scope 2 emissions was associated with electricity only and scope 3 emissions was associated with anything else for example the Carbon emissions for anything we buy in as an organisation as well as sell.

·         The baseline year of 2018/19 was used for the Carbon calculation.  This calculation was calculated by Exeter University in line with UN Greenhouse Gas Protocol and HM Government Environment Reporting Guidelines: including streamlined energy and carbon reporting guidance.

·         For the calculation the items under the three scopes were looked at as follows:

·         Scope 1 – council facilities and council vehicles

·         Scope 2 – electricity

·         Scope 3 – well to tank emissions, business mileage, commuting mileage and red diesel sold at Ilfracombe Harbour.

·         The total footprint of 3951.5 tonnes of Carbon Dioxide emissions (tCO2e) for the year was calculated.

·         From 2020/21 the calculation had been made to the same standards and carried out by North Devon Council.

·         The only difference was that commuting mileage was not included in this calculation as the figure used was based on UK averages and not particularly relevant to North Devon Council.

·         Since the Covid-19 pandemic the Council had changed its overall staff working patterns with many staff continuing to work from home.

·         For the year 2022/23 the total footprint for tonnes of Carbon Dioxide emissions was down to 3,303 tCO2e.

·         Annual emissions had decreased but still some way off meeting where we needed to be to hit zero Carbon emissions by 2030.

·         The projects that the Council had invested in have not yet been reported so further progress was expected.

·         In summary the Council had a number of projects underway to reduce its Carbon emissions such as: Heat Decarbonisation Plans funded through Low Carbon Skills Fund, a Low energy lighting project, Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme bids for Ilfracombe Pool and Landmark Theatre, Fleet decarbonisation, Solar Photo Voltaic specification for Brynsworthy Environment Centre and the Yeo Valley woodland extension.


In response to a question about staff percentages travelling to work.  The Chief Executive responded that the data for this was not collated but that there was more flexibility around staff being able to work from home more as long as the needs of Teams were being covered.  The car park at the front did appear to be full but was very likely that the overflow car park at the back was not used as much.  There was a spreadsheet detailing who was working in the office on any given day.  There was a mini bus provided to pick up and drop off staff.  As a location Brynsworthy Environment Centre was a difficult location to cycle or walk to work but car share schemes were in place.


In response to a question on whether the authority would achieve Carbon Zero.  The Sustainability and Climate Officer replied that the District as a whole had agreed to be Carbon neutral by 2050, for the Council itself we had signed up to 2030.  The Council could meet this target with the use of off-setting mechanisms.  There would be a cost associated with this.




(a)  that the results of the Carbon audit be noted,

(b)  the options for reducing these emissions be noted; and

(c)  that this report provide a basis for future discussions going forward.

Supporting documents: