At the moment, it feels like a dark and rocky time for environmental campaigns in this country.
The government has hobbled clean and democratically owned energy like community wind, solar and hyrdo just as it was taking off. At the same time, they are desperately trying to force water- and land- polluting fracking on rural communities and down the throats of the public with the threat that we must ‘keep the lights on’. They have commissioned a shockingly wasteful and dangerous new nuclear power station and greenlighted a climate-ruining third runway at Heathrow.
At the same time, they try and play campaigns off against each other, linking a phase-out of dirty coal, which poisons the climate and blights communities with open-cast mining, to a growth in dirty big biomass, which is increasingly destroying swathes of forest. Meanwhile, fuel and electricity bills rise and millions live in energy poverty whilst the unreachable Big Six post record profits.
People are scared about what the recent political developments mean for their families, their communities and the world, and fear for vulnerable people everywhere, feeling powerless and exhausted having to fight on so many fronts for progress.
It is extremely hard, but this is not the time to be fractured into smaller groups, to be siloed into single-issue campaigns fighting for crumbs. We are suggesting that we come together and talk to each other, and come up with a common declaration about what we want OUR energy system to look like. Because we do not have to make these false choices between nuclear and fracking, coal and biomass, warm homes or investment in renewables. We can reduce energy demand, phase out fossil fuels and produce enough clean, renewable energy to run a decent society and have healthy lives.
We want to gather together people working on all the issues listed above for three 1-day events around the country, to start having these extremely important conversations about the energy system we want to see and how we are going to get it.
Will you join us?
Watch this space for more details or email firstname.lastname@example.org if you would like to get more involved in organising these events.