Tuesday, September 01, 2009
How we can take action collectively and individually to combat climate change is at the core of my council portfolio. Reducing our carbon footprint is something that many of us aspire to - but vague good intentions are easily broken. As a local authority, Darlington Borough Council is working with the Carbon Trust to identify ways that carbon emissions can be cut (saving residents cash too). Bringing together the great work being undertaken in many of our schools, hospitals and workplaces, however, could give a real sense of progress, and help foster confidence that we can make a difference.
That's why I was very pleased to see the launch of the 10:10 campaign today. Fronted by some of the (ahem) usual celebs, it does allow however individuals and groups, be they in schools, workplaces or the community in general, to publicly pledge to changing our way of life now. Sometimes, the promises made by governments can seem a very long way off, and allow us to delay decision-making to another day. Unfortunately, the planet cannot wait.
Over the past year, my family have tried to find ways of reducing our carbon footprint, and I think we've been moderately successful - we've cut energy consumption, grown quite a bit of own produce, and reduced water consumption. I'm conscious that I could do far more, however, and through the blog will try and record my triumphs and disasters as I strive to shave another 10% off my carbon footprint.
If you'd like to join me - sign up. It's dead easy, via the Guardian website. There are some good tips on how you can make small changes to various aspects of your lifestyle to make a big difference too. And if you do sign up - tell me, and keep me informed of your progress via the comments - I'll be really interested to see how you get along.