Agenda and minutes

Climate and Environment Advisory Committee - Monday, 14 June 2021 2.00 p.m., MOVED

Venue: Council Chamber - South Cambs Hall. View directions

Contact: 03450 450 500 Email: 


No. Item




Apologies for absence were received from Councillors Grenville Chamberlain and Peter Fane.


Declarations of Interest




Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 185 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on 9 March 2021.


The Minutes of the meeting held on 9 March 2021 were agreed as a correct record.


Matters Arising from the Minutes


Joint Working Group

The Development Officer – Climate and Environment reported that the setting up of a joint working group of members, officers and tenants by the Housing service, as discussed at the last meeting, would be taking place in due course. They had not wished to overburden tenants who had also been involved in the setting up of the new repairs contract.


Certificate of Excellence from IESE for the Council's Green to our Core Work


The Development Officer – Climate and Environment presented the Certificate of Excellence from IESE for the Council’s “Green to Our Core” work at the meeting.


Report on the Climate & Environment Fortnight pdf icon PDF 251 KB


The Climate and Environment Project Officer introduced this report, which updated the Committee on the recently held Climate and Environment fortnight of online events. The Committee praised the event and agreed that it should be repeated next year.


UKYCC/Climate & Ecological Emergency Bill (Katie Williams and colleagues)


Serena Bashal and Katie Williams from the UK Youth Climate Coalition (UKYCC) gave a presentation to the Committee. It was noted that the UKYCC was a Non-Government Organisation for people aged 18-29, that was lobbying in support of the Climate and Ecological Emergency Bill.


It was understood that UKYCC had contacted Anthony Browne MP regarding the Bill and he was opposed to it. It was suggested that UKYCC lobby Lucy Frazer MP, who also represented South Cambridgeshire. The Chair asked that the link to the new draft of the Bill be sent to the Committee. It was hoped that Anthony Browne would be more likely to support the amended version of the Bill.


Biodiversity Supplementary Planning Document - Report to Follow pdf icon PDF 213 KB

Additional documents:


The Natural Environment Team Leader introduced this report, by explaining that a new Biodiversity Supplementary Planning Document was required, as the existing document had been agreed by the Council back in 2009. In addition, the City Council did not have a Biodiversity Supplementary Planning Document, and this report could rectify this.


Balancing competing factors

In response to questioning, the Built and Natural Environment Manager explained that the Council would be required to balance the benefits of an application for a renewable energy plant against the impact it would have on biodiversity. The Natural Environment Team Leader added that the Document was designed to steer but not instruct councillors when determining an application.


Net gain of biodiversity

It was noted that the Document stated that the biodiversity value of the development needed to exceed the pre-development biodiversity value by 10%. Councillor Tumi Hawkins suggested that the Document include the aspirational aim of 20%. The Committee recommended that a target of 20% be put in the next Local Plan.


Concern was expressed at the possible practice of development achieving the bio-diversity target value and then removing trees. It was suggested that some form of offsetting could happen within the District.


Engaging with community

Councillor Tumi Hawkins suggested that the Council engages with schools, parish councils and community groups regarding this Document.


The Committee recommended that Cabinet agree the Biodiversity Supplementary Planning Document.


Chalk Streams Report Presentation by Guy Belcher, Cambridge City Council pdf icon PDF 200 KB


Guy Belcher, Biodiversity Officer at Cambridge City Council, gave a presentation on 17 chalk streams in the Greater Cambridge area and work being carried out to maintain them, including the removal of vegetation, dredging and the adding of gravel banks.


The Committee agreed with recommendations from the Head of Environment and Waste that Guy meet with the Council officer with responsibility for managing awarded watercourses with a view to exploring how the Council can help with work needed on chalk streams in South Cambs; and that the Project Officer, Climate and Environment meet with author of the report, Rob Mungovan, to facilitate applications to the Zero Carbon Communities grant scheme from community groups involved in work to chalk streams in South Cambs where appropriate.


Resources and Waste Strategy Consultations, Bryony Rothwell, RECAP Waste Partnership Manager


Bryony Rothwell, RECAP Waste Partnership Manager, gave a presentation on the Resources and Waste Strategy consultation and its consequences. She provided details of the following aims:

·         70% of plastics recycled (current rate 55%).

·         Introduce “polluter pays” principle, to reduce packaging and recyclable material use.

·         Fly-tipping to be tackled.

·         Separate collection for food waste.

·         Deposit scheme for cans and bottles.


The Head of Environment and Waste stated that the current trial in separate food waste collection would be expanded. It was noted that according to a 2019 study 33% of food waste was being put in black bins. The hope was to ultimately reduce the amount of food being wasted. It was noted that due to lockdown both the amount of waste and the amount of recycling had increased. Hopefully by autumn the Council will see how the rates normalise.


Green Investments Update - Waterbeach microgrid scheme


The Head of Environment and Waste explained that the Council was looking at the possibility of generating electricity at the Waterbeach Depot, which could be used to charge the electric fleet vehicles. The Committee could expect to receive an update later in the year.


Forward Plan (Report to Follow) and Date of Next Meeting

To note that the next meeting will be held on Tuesday 13 July 2021 at 2pm.


To agree an extra meeting on Wednesday 22 September at 2pm to discuss the Local Plan.


The Development Officer, Climate & Environment listed the items to be discussed at the next meeting on 14 July:

·         2020-21 GHG Emissions Accounts

·         Progress report on ZC Action Plan and new action Plan to include ZC and DN actions

·         Update on grid capacity issues facing Greater Cambridge (Emma Davies)

·         Item on valuing social and environmental benefits in Investments

·         Hatton Road Attenuation Ponds

·         A428 Environmental Legacy update

·         Green Investments Update


The Committee agreed to schedule an extra meeting on Wednesday 22 September at 2pm to discuss the Local Plan.


The Committee thanked the Head of Environment and Waste for his efforts in transforming the sustainable work of the Council and wished him well in his position at a new authority.