Devon Carbon Plan

The Task Force

A Net-Zero Task Force has been appointed, which will use its specialist knowledge and experience to produce an evidence-led Devon Carbon Plan. This will consider the earliest, credible, date that should be set for net-zero emissions.

The Net-Zero Task Force is chaired by Patrick Devine Wright who is a professor at the University of Exeter and leading climate expert and IPCC author.

The members have considerable expertise in topics relevant to carbon reduction and are drawn from economic, environmental, health, community and academic organisations.

Read the Net-Zero Task Force terms of reference


The Task Force is taking a robust evidence-led approach, with an open call for evidence from the public and organisations wishing to contribute. Covid-19 resulted in a delay in the Citizens’ Assembly so the approach had to change. There are now 4 main stages:


Evidence gathering.


Publication of Interim Devon Carbon Plan for public consultation.


Citizens’ assembly to consider the more controversial options.


Publication of Final Devon Carbon Plan for public consultation.


Revised Devon Carbon Plan Process

Between October 2019 and January 2020 the Task Force ran a call for evidence and conducted a series of thematic hearings (meetings), to help gather views, evidence and data which has created a foundation from which to develop recommendations for the Devon Carbon Plan.

The Task Force assessed all available data and contributions from the evidence gathering phase to identify which actions can be adopted more easily across Devon. These ideas were used to produce a draft Interim Devon Carbon Plan that was published for consultation on the 7th December 2020. Ideas that were deemed more controversial or challenging to implement will be presented to the Citizens’ Assembly in June and July of 2021 to ensure the recommendations in the Final Devon Carbon Plan reflect the opinions of Devon’s citizens.

The views of the general public will continue to play an important role in the production of the Final Devon Carbon Plan.  The more challenging or controversial issues will be put to a Citizens’ Assembly in summer 2021. The assembly will comprise a representative sample of Devon’s citizens from different social backgrounds, including young people over 16. They will have the opportunity to develop informed opinions and collectively develop, discuss and review policy recommendations on decarbonising Devon.

Once the Citizens’ Assembly has met, the Net-Zero Task Force will bring everything together to produce a draft Final Devon Carbon Plan.

A brief summary of the changes that are needed to create a net-zero Devon.

The Interim Devon Carbon Plan in 8 Points. 1. Fossil fuels are no longer an energy source. We use more renewable energy Communities are active in energy issues We walk, cycle & use electric vehicles. 2. Energy consumption is minimal. We drive less, we are active & healthy Services are local, reducing travel needs All buildings are more efficient 3. Community action for a net-zero Devon. We think innovatively Communities share ideas of net-zero Citizens are at the centre of change 4. Carbon captured from fuels burnt. Only used for unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions Devon pilots carbon capture & storage projects e.g. catching smoke from industrial chimneys
5. Escaping greenhouse gas emissions are minimised. Reduce escaping gases from sewage works, landfill & electrical equipment 6. Develop a resilient local economy. A circular, just, regenerative economy Reskill workers e.g. in renewable energy We spend money locally 7.Resources are used more circularly. We consume fewer materials Reduce household & commercial waste We reuse, repair & recycle more 8. Maximise natural carbon storage. Adapt to climate impacts e.g. flood controls Trees planted & habitats restored We enjoy healthy, locally sourced foods