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Building a resilient recovery from the COVID-19 crisis

climate emergency logoAt the time of writing the government has thankfully executed a U-turn and will provide free school meal vouchers during the holidays to all eligible children. “Look at what we can do when we come together” said Marcus Rashford.

Food security and good health are of course paramount to all of us yet failure to to halt climate change will jeopardize our food crops, our health and the natural environment on which we all depend; every nation needs to take urgent action to halt climate change before it becomes dangerous.

Boris Johnson has said he wanted to see a " fairer, greener and more resilient global economy " after Covid-19. Yet currently, despite this ambition, the Project Birch plan to boost post-coronavirus economic recovery is on course to bail out a range of sectors - including airlines, oil and gas giants and car manufacturers – that would undermine this ambition. As demand for electricity fell during lockdown, many utilities cut back on coal first of all because it is more expensive than gas or renewable energy. In the EU imports of coal for power plants fell by almost two thirds, and similar consequences have been experienced globally.

Renewable power is cheaper, cleaner and does not damage the climate so economic recovery packages need to be designed to accelerate the shift towards renewable power rather than aiding the collapsing fossil fuel economy. The UK’s Committee on Climate Change has advised the government on the key principles to rebuild the nation in such a way that we have a stronger, cleaner and more resilient economy. Many business leaders have called for a green recovery to be prioritized and environmental charities too. It would seem to be a lose-lose to bail out fossil fuel industries – they will damage our climate and in turn us, and public money so desperately needed elsewhere will have been wasted with power being drawn from cheaper renewable energy supplies. Not only this but green jobs are cheaper: a job in home insulation can be created for £59,000 - that's far less than a road maintenance job, which is estimated by the government to be more than £250,000. Why the danger then? Because, as the director-general of the the International Renewable Energy Agency, an intergovernmental body, said recently “The only thing we have to be afraid of is that governments can be pushed by lobbyists to bail out sectors that belong to the past. And this is the real danger.”

Not surprisingly, therefore, there is a national campaign ‘Build Back Better’ to enable concerned individuals to help counter the lobbyists. You can’t eat money, as they say. To speak up for your future, do join us in writing to our MP This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , and / or joining the campaign at https://buildbackbetteruk.org/get-involved#5 .

We can each make sure we are funding the future (and not a dead end) by banking and saving ethically and investing in renewable energy and health. There is guidance on which companies to avoid and which to go for at https://www.ethicalconsumer.org/ethicalcampaigns/carbon-divestment

Safe and healthy cycling?

Further to  last month’s article, and requests to local MPS to help with a safe cycling and pedestrian route to Sherborne, we await a response from our MP for Somerset and West Frome but can report that the MP for West Dorset is raising the general matter of cycling and further routes with the Department for Transport; he will be asking Dorset Council whether they have raised the idea of establishing a safe cycleway between Sherborne and Miborne Port. Whilst using public transport remains a risk, a safe route for those without cars is particularly important. Five minutes to spare? For a template letter to send to our MP on the subject, please email the address below.

Ten minutes on Fridays at 9? Do join us - we are staging an #onlineclimatestrike via zoom at 8.50 for 9. each Friday. A group gallery photograph is taken, posted on social media and emailed to our MP to request climate action. Please email us if you wish to receive the weekly link (by bcc). We would be so glad if you join us. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

You are here: Home News Building a resilient recovery from the COVID-19 crisis