|Issue 8 : 28 March 2005|
Welcome to issue 8. This is a big issue for
me! In just a few days it is national Come Off It day – Tuesday
4 April (see below).
Secondly, a warm welcome to the huge number of new subscribers since last issue. I’d like to thank each and every one of you for the positive message that simple act of registering sends – the gift of solidarity and interest. There has been a remarkable increase in new subscribers – we are not alone!
In just a few days you will have the chance to take part in Come Off It day.
Originally aimed at just the UK, word has spread to
the USA and beyond. A large number of people will let their fingers do
the talking, by switching to low-energy light bulbs and switching off
unnecessary appliances, so helping to reduce energy demand.
There’s no need to go without – the whole point is to see the cumulative effect of millions of small actions. Go with it – people power is one helluva turn on.
To do even more, join those who are going to harness children's boundless energy in order to promote the day further and wider still. Encourage your local school to talk about Come Off It day in an assembly. The children can then spread the word and tell their parents all about Come Off It day too!
Tune in to Passion for the Planet DAB radio over the next three weeks and you might catch me talking about my big purple carbon balloons again! It’s also a great station, great music and an intelligent ‘voice’ out there. Me and my balloon were invited to be a guest on the Passion stand at the Spiritual Tides Whole Life Festival in Kent last weekend.
Green sites for sore eyes
MSN has a great new environment section – 75 great green sites – that I put together with help from my friends at www.4ecotips.com.
Carbon coaching gets even more constructive
Building magazine has featured me carbon coaching three well-known senior figures in the construction industry, all of whom have agreed to take up a 100-day challenge to cut their carbon use.
I’ve also been helping The Ecologist with some short articles in a series on greener living. The first was on energy-efficient light bulbs and the second on power use in stand-by.
Look out for what Christina Robert, the accidental ecologist, has to say about ancient sunlight (fossil fuel) in the April issue of Easy Living magazine. “Do not listen to the naysayers who say renewable energy doesn’t work – they are living in the past.”
See what Leonardo DiCaprio has to say about climate change in this short video.
Sky is not my limit
I’ve appeared on Sky TV and was interviewed in last Saturday’s The Daily Telegraph property section: The green gospel according to Dave.
What's more, I was also asked to address the energy minister on behalf of the Construction Industry Council (CIC), and the Parliamentary Works Directorate.
So whatever it is that’s going on – whatever it is that’s in the air – people want to hear about it. I’ve coached lots of individuals, lots of teams and groups, and my diary is already filling up for May!
Budget didn't budge me
The Budget didn’t do much for me. My political preferences, roughly speaking, are green, orange, red and blue, in that order. But despite a lifelong aversion to anything Tory, I whooped for joy when I heard David Cameron’s assessment of the chancellor’s 10th budget. “In a carbon conscious world, we have a fossil fuel chancellor.” Too right.
I don’t think the government is fooling anyone any more.
CARBON CONSCIOUS THINKING
There’s something in the air right now, and it’s not just CO2. There is a palpable new concern and widespread acceptance that climate change is real and serious. And there is new acceptance that as well as being part of the solution, we are all also part of the problem.
Acceptance that a quarter of a million huge balloons out there are down to me. A breakthrough for me recently (which I was helped to see by my wise new friend, Martha, who coaches social entrepreneurs such as myself to make a real impact on society) is that we each need to fully accept the messy reality of where we are – here and now – before anything can change. And we need to be kind to ourselves too, as we come to accept the reality of the vast individual lifetime legacy of between 60 and 400 tonnes of CO2.
Visualise 60,000 to 400,000 huge one-metre diameter purple balloons. That’s how much CO2 we have each individually dumped into the sky by travelling and by everyday energy use in our homes. (Based on a footprint of three to seven tonnes a head, and an average age of between 20 and 60.)
Our tiny bit part in the biggest global humanitarian disaster ever dreamt of.
That’s why this is a big issue for me – and why I’m excited about Come Off It day. This really is a fresh chance to make those small changes we’ve been thinking about. We can and must start now.
Each issue I tackle one of the reasons we use to justify
our inaction. This issue it’s one I’ve covered before, but
a relevant one to cover again:
“Energy-efficient light bulbs are huge, ugly and only come in awkward sizes. They flicker, they don’t come in soft tone light, and they take ages to warm up.”
All of these are NOT TRUE!
It is also NOT TRUE that loads of energy and CO2 goes into manufacturing light bulbs. Compared to the energy gobbled up and CO2 released during its long, bright lifetime, the energy involved in the manufacture is small.
One final myth: those on low incomes can’t afford to buy them.
Nonsense! They can’t afford NOT to buy them. 1000% safe return on a £2.50 investment is as good as it gets.
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