Agenda and minutes

Environment Scrutiny Commission
Wednesday 17 June 2020 7.00 pm

Venue: Online/Virtual. Members of the public are welcome to attend the meeting. Please contact or for a link.

Contact: Julie Timbrell 020 7525 0514 

No. Item




Notification of any items of business which the chair deems urgent


Disclosure of Interests and Dispensation




Highways, pathways and car-parking update, including impact of Covid 19

    Transport policy officers have provided the attached briefing on the impact of Covid 19 on transport plans.


    In response to a Commission request for a briefing on the percentage of car parking spaces officers have provided the attached table on CPZ permits.


    Pip Howson, Team Leader Transport policy and Simon Bevan,  Director of Planning , will attend and officers from Highways have been invited to contribute.

    Supporting documents:


    Pip Howson, Team Leader Transport policy gave a summary of the report circulated in advance.


    Simon Bevan,  Director of Planning  and Councillor Richard Livingstone, Cabinet Member for Environment, Transport and the Climate Emergency contributed to the presentation and following discussion, where the following points were made:


    ·  Southwark applied for 1.7 million from Transport for London; a recent announcement on social media indicated that the council had been awarded £100,000.


    ·  Funds will be used primarily for cycle lanes and Low Traffic Neighbourhoods principally for schemes already identified, such as the one in Dulwich, and others using mechanisms such Commonplace,  where the public can suggest schemes. 


    ·  Members emphasised the importance of using deprivation , poor air quality and  BAME populations when prioritising schemes to bring forward.


    ·  Work on TfL roads is planned to address signalling through the StreetSpace programme. 


    ·  There is plan to extend the GLA bicycle scheme to Peckham and Camberwell – however  capital is needed for docking.


    ·  More bicycle storage is needed as Cleaner Greener Safer funding provides some but not enough.




Carbon offset update


    A report in response to the Commission’s request for a briefing on the percentage of schemes utilising carbon offsets to meet targets, and how carbon offsets are used, is attached.


    Councillor Johnson Situ, Cabinet Member for Growth, Development and Planning and Simon Bevan, Director of Planning, will attend to present.

    Supporting documents:


    Simon Bevan, Director of Planning and Councillor Johnson Situ, Cabinet Member for Growth, Development and Planning presented the report. Juliet Seymour, Planning Policy Manager contributed to the discussion, where the following points were made.


    ·  There is an emphasis on encouraging carbon to be dealt with ‘on site’. Where this is not possible a Carbon Offset fee is paid by developers.


    ·  A review is underway to see if a ton of carbon can be saved for the offset price of £60; which is likely to be increased to at least £90.


    ·  The Carbon Offset policy will be linked to the Climate Emergency Strategy.


    ·  Social justice is at the heart of this,  with funding being used to address fuel poverty, for example LED lights in estates.


    ·  The council has been collecting Carbon Offsets for several years, with 1.5 million already received and more expected.


    ·  Modern homes are much more efficient. Retrofitting homes will be important and the Carbon Offset funds could be used for this.


    ·  Planning is working to improve energy statements and working with a consultancy to do this.


    ·  The district heating system is not online yet for Old Kent Road developments to connect to, but this is anticipated.


    ·  Members emphasised the importance and urgency of this work given the Climate Emergency. 





Air quality update

    Officers have provided  an update on the impact of lockdown on Air Quality and a summary of the latest Annual Status Report on Air Quality.

    Supporting documents:


    Sarah Newman, Business Unit Manger Environmental Health & Trading Standards Air quality, and Paul Newman, Team Leader, Environmental Protection Team, presented the report circulated.


    The following points were made in the subsequent discussion:  


    ·  Is the dominance of the car the underlying driver of transport emissions? Southwark is promoting car free development. Car ownership is particularly low in north of the borough, where the majority of people do not have access to a car.  There is publically available information on car ownership.


    ·  Low Emissions Neighbourhoods are taking place on Walworth Road and having a positive effect on air quality.


    ·  Promoting schemes such as Peddle Me and Electric Vehicle (EV) cargo bike charging are useful ways of reducing emissions from transport freight.


    ·  EV cars still produce emissions and perpetuate the dominance of the car and are not the solution, whereas the 15 minute city, being pursued by Paris, does offer a viable solution by localising services. An intermediated step is EV car clubs.


    ·  A recent report indicated that increased working from home because of Covid 19 has positively impacted on emissions.


    ·  The briefing on CPZ permits doses not fully address the information  requested by the Commission previously on  parking provision by Ward , on both roads and estates.


    ·  A central resource setting out emissions, parking, transport schemes e.t.c would be helpful, and this is something that is being addressed by the Climate Emergency strategy, information and governance work.


    ·  The Transport .Policy team do make use of car flow data from monitors, which are currently used in cases of emergency, and there is a digital future work stream planned.




Scrutiny Review: Air Quality

    A film, Southwark Voices,  has been made by Helena Smith to contribute to the Air Quality review. It features interviews with Southwark residents in the Spring of 2020 commenting on the reduction in pollution during the Covid 19 lockdown: 



    The draft scrutiny review report on Air Quality  is to follow.


    A final report will come to the following meeting.


Scrutiny Review: Climate emergency


Work Programme