“Make climate change an issue in the coming elections” is the message to all local voters, Councillors and MEPs from the climate change charity Winchester Action on Climate Change (WinACC).  WinACC is asking its supporters, and all who care about the future of humanity and life on the planet, to tell politicians that climate change is a key issue and that we want more action to tackle it. This means we want more renewable energy and we want cuts in overall energy use." title="<--break-->">

People tend to focus on local issues when they think about voting for the City Council, and national issues when they think about voting in the European elections. But climate change is a global issue, which needs action locally, nationally, at European level and across the planet. In addition, climate change is already having an effect on local communities in the UK and may have helped to cause this winter’s disastrous flooding in Hampshire.  

WinACC has written to the main political parties locally to let them know the sorts of questions they may be asked on the doorstep. WinACC aims for every canvasser to be asked what their party will do to cut the carbon footprint of the district.

Looking at the economy, WinACC is asking voters to ask candidates if they agree that Winchester district needs to invest in renewable energy, and how their party will drive this forward.  Anyone who wants a seat on the City Council will need to know whether they would put solar panels on all suitable Council buildings and Council house roofs. And canvassers will be asked how they plan to make walkers and cyclists safer, and cuts the emissions from cars.

WinACC wants politicians to make seven promises:

  1. Develop the low carbon economy
  2. Generate more renewable energy, large and small scale
  3. Cut energy use by the largest public organisations and businesses
  4. Build new developments – both homes and workplaces – to highest low carbon standards
    1. Improve energy efficiency of all existing homes
    2. Engage households in the District in a large-scale low carbon programme to cut 25,000 tonnes from their household footprint.
      1. Create coherent strategies and investment in public transport, walking and cycling  

WinACC is handing out a handy checklist of questions for voters to keep by their door to persuade canvassers that urgent changes are needed. At their next open meeting, on 7 June at St Lawrence Parish Room, Colebrook St, Winchester, they will set out the sort of changes we’d need to see in Winchester to meet our targets for cutting use of fossil fuels, switching to renewable energy and treading more lightly on the planet.

Notes to Editors:

  1. Winchester Action on Climate Change (WinACC) aims to cut the carbon footprint of Winchester district.  Its members include local residents, businesses and local government, working together to create a better future.  
  2. WinACC runs regular meetings throughout the year to get the Winchester community engaged in climate change and lowering carbon emissions.
  3. For further information visit winacc.org.uk or call Chris Holloway, Director on 01962 827083 / 07779 283451 or email press@winacc.org.uk
    1. Winchester Action on Climate Change Ltd is a company limited by guarantee in England and Wales with company registration no. 08013043. Our registered office is Room 163, Main Building, University of Winchester, Sparkford Road, Winchester SO22 4NR. We are also a registered charity in England and Wales with charity no 1150754.