SSDC Environment Team on Ham Hill from left Vicki Dawson, Josh Bennett, Cara Naden, Katy Menday

Hello from Cllr Sarah Dyke, Environment Portfolio Holder,

Spring is a time of new beginnings, and as the start of the nest building season begins, South Somerset District Council prepares to transition to the new Somerset Council from the start of April. Our Environment Team has met up with all the other Climate and Environment Officers across all the district and county councils as we get closer to becoming one team, uniting on delivering action on the climate and ecological emergency.

Also great to see environmental action happening at the Town and Parish Council level with Long Sutton running a successful community environment event sharing environmental actions and asking their community what actions and projects they want to see happening to act on the climate and ecological emergency - you can read about the success of this event in our newsletter below.

Which makes me wonder, how many other Town and Parish Councils across South Somerset have also recognised the Climate and Ecological Emergency creating their own action plans and community eco projects? Please ask your parish council if they have and let us know by popping details in an email to us at [email protected]

Best eco wishes from Sarah x

News and events

Two EV Charging bays painted green at the EV Charging Station located at Brympton Way

EV charging network

SSDC has for some time been working hard on the EV Charging Station Network delivery for the Council's public car parks, in partnership with Devon Councils through the DELETTI project. The project has faced unforeseen delays and challenges but we are making progress and 11 of these Charging Stations are now fully operational, the first to be fully completed with the EV Charging painted bays is the Charging Station at Brympton Way.

The network is being installed and operated by Scottish Power. A total of 27 Charging Stations will be installed which will enable 54 EVs to be able to charge all at the same time across SSDC publicly accessible car parks. Each of the installed Charging Stations has two 22kW Type2 charging points to be able to charge two EVs at the same time.

Scottish Power’s Smart Solutions Director, Chris Carberry said: “ScottishPower is excited to be working with South Somerset District Council and all the project partners involved in the Deletti programme. This is one of many such projects that demonstrates our commitment to speeding up the transition to cleaner electric transport, improving air quality and over time, driving down cost, all to deliver a better future, quicker for everyone. Scottish Power are proud to be the UK’s first, fully integrated energy company that generates 100% green electricity".

Cllr Sarah Dyke, Environment Portfolio Holder for SSDC said "The EV Charging Network across many of the SSDC public car parks is starting to be switched on which is really exciting as it will help provide Electric Vehicle Re-Charging across the district, encouraging more people to switch to cleaner modes of transport. The Scottish Power EV Charging network sources its power from their wind farms, helping to further reduce emissions from transport use and helping us get to net zero carbon by 2030."

To see which of the SSDC car parks have the EV Charging Stations fully commissioned for use please click on:

Visit our Website
Cara Naden SSDC Environment Specialist and Councillor Sarah Dyke Environment Portfolio Holder charges an electric car at the Brympton Way EV Charging Station

Electric additions for our Environmental Services Team!

And while the Charging Stations have been progressing, our Fleet team at Lufton are trialling a number of fully electric utility vehicles and machinery options. This fully electric tipper truck has been going out with the Environmental Services team as they trial using it on their work rounds to find out which EV utility vehicle is best for their work needs. They also are trialling a battery-powered weed remover. This tool will not only allow the team to become far more efficient, but also minimises our use of herbicides as a council.

Lufton Depot is paving the way for more trials such as these, so SSDC can move away from fossil fuels and reach net-zero by 2030!

FREE Sustainable Transport Event

This online event taking place on Wednesday 8 March at 2pm, will be delivered by South Somerset District Council and Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership.


Transport is one of the most significant sectors for carbon emission, so change is essential if we are to make progress towards net zero.


This event will cover:

🔌 Installing EV chargers and solar PV

⛽ Transitioning from diesel fuel to Hydro treated vegetable oil (HVO)

🚙 Economising on vehicle trips

🚗 Green employee travel plans

🚢 Challenges of shipping goods overseas

🚈 Future thinking of better integrating freight via rail

🙂 Hear from local businesses who will share their sustainable transport journey


If you're a business who wants to learn more about taking action to achieve sustainable transport solutions, then this event is the one for you!

Register here


Parish Environment Champions Spring Resource Pack

It’s that wonderful time of year when things start to burst back into life and it feels even more welcome this year. We thought you might like to use our Spring Resource Pack to give tips on all sorts of ways you can help nature.

Nesting box in a tree
Read it here 

Community Insurance

Are you a community group requiring insurance to deliver your community events and projects? - we have compiled a short guide on our Shared Resources webpage:

Visit our Webpage

The Eco Centre South West is now open to communities

The Eco Centre South West is a not-for-profit Charitable Community Benefit Society based in Somerset, set up to promote sustainability and tackle climate change by:

  • Enabling people to make changes in their daily life to live and work more sustainably
  • Making green products and services more accessible to more people

They are looking for communities interested in hosting a session lead by the Eco Centre to develop a Climate Action Plan, and also for individuals who would like to volunteer with them. If this sounds like something you would be interested in, you can visit their Facebook page here, or contact their outreach worker, Michael Fox, below.

Contact Michael

Has your Town or Parish Council declared a climate and ecological emergency?

We would like to know if your Town or Parish council has declared a climate and ecological emergency. We are aware that many councils have made this declaration, however only a few have added themselves to this map, so we know we are still missing some!

We are asking you to check with your council to confirm whether they have declared or acknowledged the climate and ecological emergency and when they did this, so we can collate this information as part of the mapping across the county. To contact us to give us this information, or if your council haven't declared an emergency and would like to know more about how they can, please contact the SSDC Environment Team below.

Contact us
People looking at stalls at Long Sutton Environmental Fair

The event also provided a range of stalls covering the main topics of Energy, Waste and Nature, with the support of Somerset Wildlife Trust, Somerset Waste Partnership, The Centre for Sustainable Energy and the WI.

Long Sutton Environment Spring Fair

Long Sutton Parish Council held their first ever Environment Spring Fair on Saturday 25th February at Long Sutton Village Hall. The event was focused around revealing the results of their Environment Plan survey which was carried out over the winter months to understand Parishioners thoughts about our changing environment and what they feel the Parish as a whole should be doing about it.

The event was a great success with fantastic turnout of around 120 people of all ages with very positive feedback and the Parish Council will be following up by finalising their Environment Plan which will provide a roadmap for helping to make the Parish more sustainable and resilient to climate change. 

There was something for everyone, including children, who could meet a real hive of bees, make a bug house and view insects under a high powered microscope. 

Support for Somerset Businesses seeking environmental improvements

Are you a Somerset based business? Are you also looking for help with your environmental credentials such as improving your energy efficiency, reducing your carbon footprint, wasting less and increasing recycling? If you answered yes to both of these, head over to the Somerset Climate Emergency business support webpage to find out more!

WRAP logo blue text on white background

The Business of Recycling

Somerset businesses can now log on for advice and guidance on recycling and how to prepare for changing regulations. The Business of Recycling website can help you recycle more, reduce waste, save energy and protect the environment. It’s been developed by WRAP and Somerset is one of five areas piloting it. If you run a business or knows someone that does, take a look and pass it on!

Key content includes:

  • A waste calculator tool to help businesses work out how much waste they generate and how recycling can help save money
  • Guidance on why they should recycle, waste audits, Duty of Care, procurement, communicating in the workplace, managing and storing waste
  • Free downable communications resources to help businesses engage with staff and encourage recycling in the workplace.


Somerset is also running a localised trial of face-to-face support for businesses to help them prepare for forthcoming changes. The Business Support Advisors will be available to meet with businesses in Langport, Chard and Ilminster and help them understand how regulations affect them and what resources are available to help. This support is being trialled in Somerset between 13 February and last week of April 2023 and will only be available to businesses in these three towns. For more information contact [email protected]

Image of thrown away food 4.5 million tons a year

Food Waste Action Week- 6-12 March

4.5 million tonnes of edible food is thrown away each year by UK households, and 25% of this wasted food is due to cooking, preparing or serving too much, costing UK households £3.5 billion each year. 

It is for this reason that Love Food Hate Waste is dedicating a whole week of action on how simple behaviours can reduce food waste, time and money, ultimately reducing the impact of food waste on climate change.

Click here to get involved!

White keep Britain Tidy logo on pink background promoting spring clean dates 17 March to 2 April

The Great British Spring Clean- 17 March-2 April

Great British Spring Clean is the nation’s biggest mass-action environmental campaign.

Last year, thousands of people across the country pledged to pick nearly half a million bags of litter, and this year the campaign requires even more people to get involved to clean up the places and spaces we love!

If you would like to be a #LitterHero and support keeping your local area beautiful, you can get involved here!

Recommended Reading and Ones to Watch

Why Women Grow book cover of flowers

Why Women Grow

is a much-needed exploration of why women turn to the earth, as gardeners, growers and custodians.

This book emerged from a deeply rooted desire to share the stories of women who are silenced and overlooked.

Jaega Wise in a photo with food barrels

Eco-labelling for food- What difference could it make?- BBC Radio 4

Join Jaega Wise as she uncovers how environmental-impact labels on food and drink products could help lower the carbon footprint of the food industry.

Guy Martin in a nuclear power control room

Guy Martin's Great British Power Trip- Channel 4

Join Guy Martin on his travels around Britain to investigate how Britain makes its power and why it is costing so much money.

@terrafarmer_ag_uk - Instagram

This account provides imperative information for the farming community including topics such as regenerative farming, soil health and carbon baseline measuring.

And finally...

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