Draft minutes

Climate Change Project Advisory Group - Tuesday, 21st March, 2023 4.00 pm

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No. Item


Election of Chairman


The Democratic Services Officer advised that, in the absence of the Chairman and Vice-Chairman, the Group was required to elect a chairman to preside over the meeting.


RESOLVED: That Councillor O C de R Richardson be elected as chairman to

                      preside over the meeting.




It was noted that apologies for absence had been received from Councillors S H Beer, N J Collor and C A Vinson.


Appointment of Substitute Members


It was noted that, in accordance with Council Procedure Rule 4, Councillors S C Manion and D Hannent had been appointed as substitute members for Councillors N J Collor and C A Vinson respectively.


Declarations of Interest


There were no declarations of interest. 




The notes of the meeting of the Group held on 22 November 2022 were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.


Draft Annual Climate Change Report


The Strategic Director (Operations and Commercial) (SDOP) advised that the recruitment of a successor to the Principal Climate Change and Sustainability Officer (PCCSO) was underway.  Although the PCCSO was retiring, it was likely that she would return to the Council to help with grant schemes and home upgrades.  Councillor Richardson expressed his gratitude to the PCCSO for all her sterling work.


Referring to the report, the SDOP advised that there was a long way to go to move the Council’s climate change agenda forward, but the Council’s Climate Change Strategy would provide focus and good work was already being done. 


In relation to the report, the following points were raised by Members:


·         Need for brief paragraph explaining Scope 3 under Total Emissions by Scope (page 16)

·         Aylesham bus now in operation and proving useful.  Councillor M Bates reported that the service had generated interest from other parishes such as St Margaret’s and Worth and he was investigating whether there were  developments coming forward that could support other bus services.  The SDOP confirmed that the service had come about through the planning process for the Aylesham expansion (i.e. Section 106 contributions).

·         Waste (page 34) – other work going on such as litter picking and litter lotto

·         Requested that Kingsdown be added in relation to works on sea defences (page 22)

·         Requested that climate change e-learning be made mandatory for Members as well as Officers.  The SDOP commented that this could be offered to new Members as part of their induction training.   It was acknowledged that cross-council working on climate change needed to be strengthened, with an officer in Ashley Taylor’s team being fundamental to taking things forward in policy terms.  He added that most of the work to date had been grant rather than policy focused. 


RESOLVED:   That the report be noted.



Domestic Energy Efficiency Schemes Update


The SDOP introduced the report, advising that the Home Upgrade 2 Grant would continue and confirming that solar panels had been installed in 96 households in the district under the Solar Together Kent initiative.


RESOLVED: That the report be noted.


Electric Vehicle Charging Points Update


Councillor O C de R Richardson welcomed the report but commented that the data were still relatively new and an annual summary in the future would be useful.  Councillor Bates commented that there were constraints around installing charging points and more funding was needed.   That being said, there was general agreement that there was little need to install more charging points when capacity had not yet been reached.  Councillor Bates advised that users would be required to pay for a parking space on top of their electricity usage with effect from April.  


The SDOP confirmed that users were presently only charged for electricity, at 35p per kilowatt hour.  He stated that charging provision at new housing developments and for residents without means of a domestic connection would need to be looked at.  Connection to UK Power Networks was also a limiting factor.   Councillor D Hannent reported that an energy company had quoted a charge of £80,000 for putting in a home connection point.  There were discussions about ten charging points having been offered to the Council free of charge.  Councillor Bates recalled that these would have cost the Council money to install, and he understood that the offer had been declined.   Councillor Richardson requested that the charging data be brought back to the Group in six months’ time.  The SDOP suggested that the data could be presented in a different way and that the Group should look at how use was increasing in terms of charging time.


RESOLVED: That the report be noted.