Issue - decisions

Climate change and resilience work - OEP

26/03/2014 - Update on Climate resilience and SWIMs

The partnership considered a short update on Oxfordshire County Council’s progress toward recording and monitoring the impact of severe weather events on properties and services. The update also outlined opportunities to work with the county’s Community Action Groups to build community resilience to weather events.


Oxfordshire County Council was holding a summit on flood prevention for key stakeholders on 21 March.


The Environment Agency had proposed a major flood alleviation scheme for Oxford.


Members commented and noted that:

·          all of West Oxfordshire’s parishes which had experienced flooding had a parish flood plan;

·          the partnership’s emergency protocol had co-ordinated communications about waste collections to the public to reduce confusion;

·          waste partnership officers were collating information on the impact of flooding on waste collection and disposal;

·          the sand in sandbags could be reused (if uncontaminated) or returned for reuse as aggregate.


The partnership agreed:

1.      to ask the Environment Agency for information on their proposed flood alleviation scheme;

2.      that the outcome of the flood prevention summit should be discussed at a future meeting;

3.      to support building community resilience work through their local contacts; and

4.      to consider a report about participating in the Severe Weather Monitoring System (SWIMS) at a future meeting of the Partnership.

04/12/2013 - Report on Carbon Emissions

The partnership considered the report setting out progress against the Oxfordshire Climate Local commitment to reduce carbon emissions by three per cent year on year against a 2010/11 baseline.


Members noted that measurements of CO2 and greenhouses gases were not directly comparable and that the figures reported across years and between councils were not like-for-like. Clear standards for measurement and reporting should be agreed and used by all partner councils to allow comparisons.


Members were pleased to see an overall reduction in CO2 emissions close to or at the target across the partner councils over the two years.


The partnership agreed:

1.      to request details of how South Oxfordshire District Council and Vale of White Horse district council had reduced their CO2 emissions;

2.      to agree a standard method of calculation and measuring CO2 and other greenhouse gas emissions across the county to allow direct comparisons;

3.      to note the report and progress made.

09/07/2013 - Climate resilience work and climate projections

The partnership considered a report and heard a presentation on climate projections and planning for resilience to extreme events.


Mrs Ohlenschlager explained that the Severe Weather Monitoring System allowed data to be collected on the location, impact, and cost of events to help with prediction and prevention of future events. Data about all severe weather related incidents could be collected from individuals county-wide. Current climate predictions were for warmer and less predictable climate with more and more extreme severe weather events through the year, from more heat waves to more days of heavy rain. Local authorities had good plans and procedures for emergencies but more contingency planning for dealing with the impact was required. This year there would be a full audit of the budget and management capability for dealing with the damage from weather events.


Members of the partnership commented that there was a need to be aware of the financial pressures and complexity of dealing with severe weather, and councils relied on other agencies to help get funding for protection measures. Could other countries’ methods of mitigating and coping with extremes, or historical methods of coping be used to reduce the impact of severe weather? It was better to be properly prepared for severe weather regardless of the accuracy of the predictions.  


The partnership:

1.      noted the report; and

2.      asked for a report about participating in the Severe Weather Monitoring System (SWIMS) at a future meeting of the Partnership.