This year I celebrate 10 years as director of Marches Energy Agency, a charity that encourages communities to adopt low carbon lifestyles. We believe that acting locally can help shrink the global carbon footprint.
Voices on climate change
As world leaders meet in Copenhagen hoping to thrash out an agreement on climate change, we’ve invited Ashden winners to contribute comments on the event and how their work is part of the solution.
Sarah Butler-Sloss, Ashden Awards Founder Director says:
“Tackling climate change and global poverty can go hand in hand - and the technologies to help achieve this are working on the ground, across the developing world right now. Millions are already benefitting, but, with significant political and financial will, they could scale up, reach their full potential and transform the lives of a billion people that need them. It is of paramount importance that they are given this support now.”
Housing emits 27% of the UK’s carbon emissions, providing a huge challenge for the year’s ahead. But the good news is that even owners of the five million older homes have the power to drastically reduce carbon. By retrofitting old houses with energy saving measures you can save between 60-80% of the property’s carbon footprint.
The gravity and magnitude of climate change demands that we get down to quick, firm and sustainable action. I believe our environmental problems are of our own making and if we want to change what lies ahead we need to look at the actions of today.
Copenhagen needs to be a massive wake-up call for governments to realise the huge economic and social benefits that a low carbon economy can offer.
Climate change is an ugly problem with devastating consequences. But it is a problem based fundamentally on our use of energy and it is a problem that can be solved. Indeed climate change offers us exciting opportunities to create a better, cleaner, more sustainable model of energy practice. But it needs all of us to find the solutions; to find them in our workplace, in our schools, homes, and communities. And we must start now.
Poverty is the greatest threat to our environment. The poor use some of the most inefficient technologies and polluting fuels - not because they are cheap but because they don’t have a choice.
So far India’s media coverage on Copenhagen is all about dissent, discontent and dissonance when it should be about collective resolve and action on climate change.