Make climate change an issue in the coming local Council election on 5 May. When you’re canvassed:

  • Tell them that climate change is a key issue for you
  • Say you want more action locally to tackle climate change. You want more renewable energy and you want cuts in overall energy use.

Download and print this briefing to keep by your door. Use it to show canvassers that you want urgent change.

You could also write to candidates, and raise questions at public meetings.

WinACC briefing

2015 was the hottest year on record and close to 1°C warmer than pre-industrial time.

Can we avoid dangerous global warming of 2°C? Only if immediate action is taken to cut emissions NOW.

So what can be done?

Action is required at all levels - by governments at international, national and local levels and by individuals.

The UK has a target of cutting emissions by 80% by 2050 relative to 1990. Ask what your candidate will do if elected to help achieve this. Will they:

  • Encourage walking and cycling [health benefits, fewer exhaust emissions and less air pollution]
  • Increase bus services throughout the District [fewer car journeys, fewer exhaust emissions]
  • Cut traffic in Winchester town [more use of P&R, fewer central car parks, less air pollution and fewer exhaust emissions]
  • Encourage low emissions cars; Winchester city centre air pollution exceeds EU/UK limits for lung-damaging particulates and nitrogen dioxide[large gas guzzlers take up too much space and damage verges; free parking for electric vehicles, higher charges for biggest cars]
  • Insulate existing private and council-owned homes [fewer emissions, better health]
  • Ensure new-build homes built to the highest enforceable standards; check this standard met after occupation [developers pay for any operational under-performance]
  • Reduce emissions by the commercial sector including shops [official statistics show no decrease in commercial electricity consumption since 2005 unlike all other local authorities in Hampshire, bar one]
  • Encourage local installation of renewable energy sources such as onshore wind, PV farms, sustainable wood fuel and anaerobic digesters [UK faces energy crisis in 2025 – growing gap between supply and demand - as polluting coal-burning and ageing nuclear power stations are closed.]
  • Ensure the proposed new Leisure Centre provides a once–in-a-lifetime opportunity to provide an efficient Energy Centre with a district heating network and Combined Heat and Power [cut WCC carbon footprint]
  • Implement the “Low Carbon Route Map” endorsed last summer by the Winchester City Council Cabinet, which included a commitment to generate locally our share of the national targets for renewable energy (15% by 2020, 30% by 2030).  What will they do to make sure that this is achieved?

If talking to someone who has been a Councillor, ask:
What has Winchester City Council  actually done in the last decade to counter climate change? What effect on greenhouse gas emissions did the action have? 

Some facts to help you….

About climate change

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) stated in 2014 “.. greenhouse gas emissions ..are now higher than ever. ..Their effects .. are extremely likely [95-100% certain] to have been the dominant cause of the observed warming since the mid-20th century”.

The emissions largely come from the burning of fossil fuels which has caused atmospheric carbon dioxide to now exceed 400 parts per million. This is 43% up on pre-industrial times, highest for 800,000 years and possibly 20 million years.

The threats

2015 was the hottest year on record and close to 1°C warmer than pre-industrial time.

Floods, storms, heat waves, droughts and wildfires are now much more common worldwide. Climate scientists increasingly can attribute climate change as the principal cause of such events.

Climate change is also driving sea-level rise threatening up to 187 million people worldwide this century.

Can we avoid dangerous global warming of 2°C?

Only if immediate action is taken to cut emissions NOW.

195 governments meeting in Paris (COP 21) last December recognised
that climate change represents an urgent and potentially irreversible threat to human societies”.

Climate modelling shows the world has less than 20 years to get to net zero emissions if we are to have a 2/3 chance of avoiding 2°C. 

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