Haringey Climate Forum Meeting 15th June 2022
Present: Quentin Given (convenor), Cllr Mike Hakata (cabinet member for climate ) Joe Baker (head of carbon management), Cara Jenkinson, Anita Chadwick, Alex Dickinson, Sally, Sonja of 4U2, Lucy, Patrick Maher, Helen Mayer, Pamela Harding, Michael Poteliakoff (HCC), Norman Beddington, Stephanie Grant, Joyce Rosser, Chris Barker, Sydney Charles, Simon Henry, Brian Simpson, Kim (HCC).
Apols – David Cohen, Alan Morton
- Mike Hakata set out some key points from the council’s commitments:
- Driving down motor traffic is key to reducing emissions
- Three Streets for people areas (formerly known as LTNs) would be implemented this summer, and would be the biggest in London and maybe UK.
- Cutting emissions etc would be embedded across all services, and driven through procurement etc
- Council is committed to urban greening, with corridors of wildflower meadows, parklets, and extended canopy cover – the largest investment in trees of any borough. This will need a business case to secure funding in next budget cycle (2023/24)
- There is big issue about insurance claims on trees. Tree team has been expended but still small.
- Need to co-produce the plan for urban forest
- Need a circular economy action plan to reduce waste etc.
- Joe Baker expanded on progress on some policy areas
- Climate spend of £200m being agreed, of which £101m is investment in retrofitting social housing. Target is EPC B by 2035. Council talking to CONEL abut local skills training – eg from being gas fitter to ASHP installer – and using Retrofit Works co-op to stimulate local businesses.
- Decentralised Energy Network (DEN) funding announcement due to be made in next fortnight
- DEN network will use waste heat from Edmonton to displace gas (or electricity used for heat pumps etc) and should achieve 5% emissions reduction across the borough.
- Need action but also good planning to avoid unintended consequences (as has happened over shift to diesel, promotion of biofuels, making homes too hot etc)
- Initially the pipes will run to Spurs and on to Tottenham Hale developments, spur to Broadwater Farm, Wood Green, Ally Pally and spur to St Ann’s development (and maybe Hackney and Woodberry Down).
- The network is technology neutral, and should last 70-80 years, so in future heat from river and reservoirs, tube tunnels etc can be added. Pipe network is biggest cost.
- This will also have air quality and local economic benefits.
- Council also working on Energiesprong project with 50 homes, it’s taken a year to get this far.
- Private sector retrofit – Council is bidding for funds to make energy efficiency enforcement stronger in the context of landlord licensing.
- School streets – 24 implemented (fastest rate in London) and another 12-15 this year, with associated work to encourage modal shift by parents, and encouraging cycling etc. Traffic has dropped 21%, schools report that children who walk are readier to learn,. 100% of schools are supportive, and 75% parents.
- 70% of the Fixed Penalty Notices associated with school streets are non-Haringey residents, one as far away as Glasgow.
- Carbon literacy training is being rolled out across departments, and software developed to facilitate carbon integration into reports etc.
- New planning policy will take as strong a line on carbon as possible, including embodied carbon.
How will it work? Mike responded that some issues were already decided eg NLWA on the incinerator so were not amenable to co-production, and some are largely technical eg the DEN network. But other issues like waste reduction, private sector retrofit, PV roll-out, urban forest should be co-produced.
Streets for People (SfP) –and transport
- Haringey was behind but is catching up, and ahead re Blue Badge exemptions etc.
- Next SfP should be Alexandra North, a mini-one for Northwood Road in Highgate, and Tottenham from the Hale up to Northumberland Park, for implementation in 2023, with 50% of borough covered by end of 2023/24.
- Can we merge transport, highways and regen into one department to ensure better join-up? Mike said they were looking at having one Asst Director for highways and transport policy to address this.
- Do “Streets” have a negative connotation for some people? If so, need to bring people in to discuss how this can be addressed.
- Will council support Smart Road User Charging? Yes, council is being more active campaigner, eg recent letter being signed by London boroughs protecting against Chancellor’s 91% tax breaks for new N Sea gas etc. Will definitely support SRUC.
- What about schools on main roads? Looking at making the roads red routes to reduce parking and hence school run, and green screens – at Holy Trinity school this has reduced pollution levels by 30%. Tree planting also reduces pollution levels. Mike had visited Walworth LTN where build-outs into main roads have pushed traffic a bit further away from schools.
- Can we reduce parking spaces near schools and clamp down on idling? Yes re parking; idling is v hard to enforce but can do more signage. Haringey is part of London Against Idling and pressing for change in law to make enforcement easier. Could also use CCTV to enforce re zigzag lines?
- Will there be cycle lanes for schools? Some will be on cycle routes but not others – need to look at this.
- Schools – excellent work being done by Dave Cohen with students and staff at Highgate Wood – this should be brought to Mike and Zena Brabazon (cabinet member for schools) with a view to wider roll0out. There has been training for climate ambassadors for schools. Sally offered workshops for schools.
- School buildings need retrofit. One has defective boilers that can’t be turned off, and big glazed area, so very hot and wasteful. DoE has published plan for schools to cut carbon but there is no funding behind it.
- Haringey has secured £2.5m for school retrofit, and developed a checklist for building managers to ensure energy efficiency is built into any major works.
- Rising energy bills have pushed some schools into large and rising debt. So yes, need a plan for all schools. This should be developed in autumn.
Solar PV on Council owned roofs. Some schools have existing PV installations which are helping reduce electricity bills. But some don’t work, and they don’t have smart meters to show the benefits to school users. Could Haringey give En10ergy a grant to carry out repairs and smart installations?
Trees and biodiversity
- Tree planting – biggest issue is watering. Can ask people to adopt local trees to water. But should we be employing more staff as well?
- How can we reverse the tide of paving over front gardens and plastic lawns? The Haringey Plan will discourage but hard to deal with existing properties.
- Biodiversity Action Plan draft should be out in autumn. Needs to be embedded in new Haringey Plan.
- Note good examples of repair cafes – Haringey Fixers are doing repair sessions at Broadwater Farm on Tuesdays, Lordship Rec hub on Sundays. Sonja’s project also looking at hubs for toys, children’s clothes etc. Can we have an inventory of these projects? Mike said he’s keen on repair cafes, Library of Things, and carbon cafes. Need to visit Islington’s to learn from them.
- A pilot project on waste clothes and white goods netted 9 tonnes from 12,000 residents – cpd to just 2 tonnes from whole borough at existing recycling centre. More produced in the west of the borough.
Retrofit and skills
- Skills gaps in retrofit – can procurement be used to get local people trained? Yes, keen to discuss with CONEL. Recent GLA grant to CONEL for green jobs was mainly spent on green landscape training at Caoel Manor, we need to focus it on retrofit. The big work programmes enable council to offer contractors two years+ of work, so providing more secure environment for investment in training.
- Able to pay sector of homeowners? Council ran the Green Homes Project but doesn’t currently have plan for this sector. Needs much more central govt funding. Could develop a plan through co-production involving En10ergy/MHSG?
- Promoting rooftop PV? Reducing energy consumption is first priority but could co-develop a plan .
- Leaseholders make up 5,000 of the 22,000 council homes. Yes they would legally have to be charged for their share of retrofit works. Can be large bills but good repayment terms offered eg interest-free over 10 years.
- Need more exemplar homes. One of the Energiesprong homes could be for a while but then needs to be occupied.
- From the discussion, looks like there should be task-and-finish groups on trees, solar, waste reduction, schools, private sector retrofit at least.
- We need to follow up with Mike and Joe on how this will happen and how co-production will work.
- We need to maintain regular meetings with Mike and Joe to keep information flowing. Suggested that we alternate in-person and online meetings.
The zoom meeting was well attended. See here for the notes.
The Agenda was:
- Carbon reduction in planning decisions
- Viability in planning decisions
- Training and development – Planning Sub-Committee
and other topics that were raised included the use of Feed In Tariff income for residents benefits, the new Local Plan, the carbon implications of demolition, biodiversity, the Edmonton Incinerator and the walking and Cycling plan.
Haringey Climate Forum Meeting 15th September 2020 (incorporating content from the Chat)
Quentin Given (convenor), Chris Barker (minutes), Joe Baker (Haringey head of carbon management), Brian Simpson, Helen Meyer, Tim Root, Sydney Charles, Anita Chandler, Alan Morton, Norman Beddington, Joyce Rosser, Fred Fitzke, Trixi B, Karen Lansdown, Ian and Tessa Henghes, Dermot Barnes, Glenys Law, Olivia Vincenti, Patrick M.
Apologies: Cllr Kirsten Hearn, Pamela Harling, Tilly Williams.
- Update on the Carbon Change Action Plan. Joe Baker.
Net zero carbon target by 2041 adopted by the Council in March 2020. The Covid emergency delayed progress after that. Joe stressed the following points from the Action Plan:
- The Council rented a fleet of all-electric vehicles for emergency food delivery. But this proved popular with drivers and the Council is now looking at increasing its own fleet with EV’s
- School street measures are being introduced to restrict traffic around schools. These have proved popular with the schools. This programme is under constant review and the Councils aims to move towards permanent measures as soon as we can.
- An online eco advice web page has been produced for home owners to measure their domestic consumption of energy and how to reduce it, to be launched imminently.
- A clean air app has been produced to enable drivers to map their travel and make decisions about whether to drive, walk, cycle or get an electric vehicle and whether they could save money as a result. To see the App: https://cleancar.io/
Please visit the Google Play (Android) store or the Apple App store to download the App, and when registering, enter code: 1f5e3cf5.
- Google Play store: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.thevirtualforge.cleancar
- Apple App store: https://apps.apple.com/gb/app/cleancar-mobile/id1199499106
- A Council plan on single use plastics is to be agreed at Cabinet meeting tonight, this will cover the council’s activities but also set out how to help businesses and the wider community reduce SUP. (this was agreed, it’s at https://www.minutes.haringey.gov.uk/documents/s117838/Single%20Use%20Plastics%2020-08-19-SUP_14.03.pdf)
- Haringey signs up to the Mayor’s Energiesprong plan to retrofit homes to reduce energy consumption. The business case is being developed for agreement by New Year. This will aim to raise the council’s worst homes from F to A rating.
- The Council had hoped the CCAP would be consulted on in normal ways as lockdown eased but, as this now seems unlikely, the consultation on the CCAP will be started on line hoping to finalise the Plan by March 2021. Efforts will be made to involve people and particularly people not on line.
- Will the School Streets programme Phase 2 resuming in December follow the pattern of Phase 1 which largely avoids street closures and therefore won’t be very effective?
- Glenys is concerned about the absence of a policy on trees. It was suggested this could be included in a response to the plan. Alan said he went to Queens Wood this afternoon and heard that Catherine West had engineered a meeting between AXA, the insurance co and Haringey Council to discuss the 4 trees. The conclusion is expected at the end of the week.
- Dermot asked about funding streams for retrofitting and also for repair or upgrade to solar arrays. This will be funded from the £101m allocated to Homes for Haringey investment programme and, it is hoped, match funding.
- There was a discussion about ways of reaching beyond the ‘usual suspects’ (Joe was anxious that people would not regard this term negatively!).
- It was agreed the Forum should be promoting this consultation as a way to engage more people, through residents’ associations, Covid support groups, schools, churches, student climate network, and asking ward councillors to engage groups in their area.
- Door knocking needn’t involve handing leaflet which could be subsequently put through the door. Or left at food bank collection point or delivered with food etc or taken home from school? (esp clean air ones..)
- There is an app called InYourArea’ would it be possible to contact the app developers of this app to advertise it on there?
- Making it relevant to people – linking to warm homes and job creation for example – will be important.
- Can we get a Spurs player to mention it on social media, or someone like that?
- Could council help schools do relevant projects, eg socially distanced planting for excluded groups?
We will schedule the next meeting to focus on engagement.
- New Climate Forum website. Sydney Charles.
Sydney showed us the 40:20 website and then the new one for the Climate Forum which is under development. She hopes to expand it with additional information and hopes that members and others will forward comments and suggestion for additions to her.
Thanks to Sydney and Ian for their work on this. The meeting thought the new site looked very good.
We asked for volunteers at the meeting or beyond to help expand the site and promote it via social media etc.
There was a discussion about ways of publicising the website. Glenys suggested organising local events and it was also suggested that schools be contacted for support.
Ian pointed out that to make the site more readily visible on Google we need to generate more traffic to it. For example, putting the link in community group Facebook and Tweets and emails.
Parting comments on Chat….
Many thanks to everyone for their work and positivity..;)
Congratulations to Sydney and Ian. A great piece of work!
Attendees: Chris Barker, Joyce Rosser, Cara Jenkinson, Ian Henghes, Joe Baker, Tim Root, Alan Morton, Cecilia Keating, Pam Harling, Norman Beddington, Anita Chandler, Quentin Given, Sydney Charles, Paul Ely
1.Paul Ely – Parks and Green Spaces Strategy for Zero Carbon.
- Cara – can food growing areas by created in parks?
- Norman – should we declare ecological emergency to help tackle eg glyphosate use?
- Paul – could Friends groups or other volunteers help weed paths so reduce need for spraying?
- Sydney can put it on website
- Paul – Conflict between encouraging cycling and ecology eg on Parkland Walk.
- Anita – Mutual aid groups could adopt trees? Good to get engagement from very local level, groups of neighbours etc.
- Pam – can we have more covered areas in parks for meeting people outdoors in bad weather?
- Paul – we are talking to Public Health & CCG about encouraging older people to use parks more
- Paul – we don’t have figures for carbon emissions, would need to analyse bills etc but building and plant likely to be major sources, and embodied carbon in importing plants
- Joe – working with Parks to provide E-cargo bikes to reduce van use
- Everyone is encouraged to respond to Paul Paul.Ely@haringey.gov.uk
2. Promoting the website/Forum/action plan.
- Have already contacted many community groups but response limited so far
- Schools and PTAs? Anita said she’d already contacted PTAs but had v little response. Tim willing to follow up with eg Headteachers.
- Sydney suggested the IT specialist school in Tottenham – could they help with e-promotion?
- Joe said that he would let Sydney have a copy of the CC Action Plan in Word, for use on the web site.
- Norman – Neighbourhood Forums in eg Highgate? He can follow up.
- Norman – what about StART, MHSG, Green New Deal?
- Joe said the Commonplace website had 16,000 interactions during the cycling & walking consultation earlier this year. They were in contact with the Youth Forum, some schools, and Spurs about the plan, meeting Spurs this week. The Council’s PR team would be contacting Tottenham Community Press, the MPs etc but had no problem with the Forum doing so too. Target of 1,000 engagements with under-18s.
- Consultation closes 4 January.
- Pamela – could we get flyers we could print out for noticeboards? Joe said yes, they could do pdf versions.
- Quentin – could try to use NextDoor, What’sApp groups
- Pamela will write something for Harringay On Line.
- Try CountUsIn?
- Pamela to contact Selby
3.Promoting harder asks in Plan
- Joe explained why GreenHomes fund doesn’t work this year for Council, but will work up schemes for next year. Also hard for anyone to access it. Council promoting the EcoFurb for homeowners.
- Joe said that they were talking to Spurs to see how their eco programme could help
- MHSG meeting tonight has 50 people signed up. Talks will be available on YouTube.
- Sydney – we need to promote interest in retrofit and work to ensure that there are enough installers. Joe said the Covid recovery plan includes work with SMEs on retrofit.
- TfL had its funding agreed so waiting to hear about Tranche 2 of funding for eg cycling in Haringey.
- Cabinet to discuss School Streets report on 10 Nov, the report is available on website now. What about schools not in this programme eg on main roads? Council is bidding for funds for green infrastructure etc to reduce pollution. Extension of ULEZ etc will also reduce pollution.
- Low Traffic Neighbourhoods have been controversial elsewhere, need bottom up initiatives to de-fuse opposition.
- Walthamstow is good example of how they work and are popular even with businesses who initially opposed.
- Anita enquired about the action in the plan to put solar panels and wind turbines in the Lee Valley. Joe said early days.
4.Future of Forum
- Quentin said he had no recent mandate to continue as convenor but the meeting endorsed him nem con.
- Suggested forming a steering group to widen involvement. Pam suggested Ubele based at Wolves Lane, and Selby. CONEL also suggested.