10 things we learnt from the Green New Deal for Gloucester

By 22nd July 2019 One Comment

On Saturday 6th July Gloucester Labour Party presented an afternoon event on the Green New Deal, which I chaired. Here are some things we learned!

1. Social and environmental justice are two sides of the same coin

Ted Howard, the brains behind the successful Preston model kicked off the event by explaining how we can design a local economy that automatically increases wealth in the community and keep jobs local. 

2. The railways need to be brought back into public ownership!

Clive Lewis was delayed by trains from Norwich… Once arrived, he gave a compelling speech about how to transform our economy to tackle climate change. We must start with the Treasury’s “Green Book ” – which has nothing to do with being ‘green’ – although it does determine a lot of our decision making.

3. There is no shortage of good ideas

We heard from Kye Dudd, Bristol City Councillor about how Bristol have been reducing the city’s environmental footprint. From district heating to their own publicly-owned energy company, there is plenty being done that we can learn from in Gloucester. 

4. Climate change, food production, well-being – it’s all connected

It’s obvious when you say it out loud, isn’t it? Kath Dalemy, CEO of Sustain shared her knowledge and experience about how we can improve all three at the same time.

5. We need to generate solar power in a LOT more places

Peter Boait, Chair of Gloucestershire Community Energy Cooperative spoke about schemes to get solar adopted on houses and community buildings. 

6. Again – it’s all connected – and we can help our kids to be healthier if we try

James Cleeton, South England Director from Sustrans spoke about frightening levels of air pollution outside the school gates of the school. If we shut off school roads at drop off and pick up times, children no longer have to stand outside breathing in fumes, encouraging less driving and more walking in the process.

7. Gloucester people already have plenty of knowledge and ideas 

Our audience was in the know. We had brilliant questions ranging from the circular economy to Gloucester’s incinerator, and more. 

8. It’s a climate emergency

City council Labour group leader Kevin Stephens, rounded off the event by speaking about a local motion to declare a climate emergency in Gloucester and become net-zero carbon by 2030.

9. It’s going to be difficult

There is a huge amount of energy in Gloucester to tackle climate change. We all know it’s going to be difficult, we know there are vested interests ranged against us – and we’re ready for the challenge.

10. Labour’s Green New Deal is a great place to start

We can implement the action needed under a determined Labour government, with a new MP for Gloucester fully committed to the challenge in front of us!

Join the discussion One Comment

  • Wanda Lozinska says:

    It was a thoroughly inspiring event. Clive Lewis in particular has a vision of what’s needed to take us well into the future. The world is changing rapidly, with climate change and new technologies that will transform our lives. Good to know that the Labour Party has good ideas on how to adapt to these changes.
    Gloucester should also follow the Preston model to keep the City’s wealth circulating within the area and not leaked to overseas corporations.
    Gloucester will have a great future under a Labour government!

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