People are prepared to continue many of the lifestyle changes enforced by the coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown to help tackle the current climate emergency, and the government would have broad support for a green economic recovery form the crisis, according to a report by Climate Assembly UK.
The continuation of working from home – even optionally or for a smaller amount of time per week – is a popular option, along with changes to how people travel. The findings come from the Climate Assembly UK, a group of 108 members of the public chosen to be a representation of the general UK population. The assembly members met over six weekends in Spring 2020. They heard balanced evidence on the choices the UK faces, discussed them, and made recommendations about what the UK should do to become net zero by 2050. Their final report was published on Thursday 10 September.
Nearly eight in ten of the members said the measures taken by the government to help the economic recovery from Covid-19 should bedesigned to help reach net zero, and an even bigger proportion – 93% – said that, as the lockdown eased, the government and employers should encourage lifestyle changes to cut emissions.
It was quite clear that many of the assembly members felt this period should be taken as an opportunity to encourage a green economic recovery with a focus on promoting cleaner, greener lifestyles, and an economy that prizes sustainability over short-term benefits that would harm the planet.
Ibrahim, Climate Assembly Member and General Practitioner.
The findings from Climate Assembly UK come at an important time. The Royal Town Planning Institute (RTPI) have recently launched a new campaign – Plan The World We Need. The aim of the campaign is to raise awareness of the vital role spatial planners have in tackling some of our largest social issues we currently face, such as reviving the economy, meeting our 2050 net-zero targets and tackling inequality.
As part of the campaign, the RTPI are calling on governments across the UK and Ireland to capitalise on the expertise of planners to achieve a sustainable, resilient and inclusive recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
How can ethical partnership help?
At ethical partnership our work is guided by our values, where we place a strong emphasis on the needs of the local community. We constantly engage with all stakeholders to ensure that our projects provide the best possible outcome for the local community and welcome the RTPI’s emphasis that investing in place post-COVID-19 is a top priority to create the world we need and ensuring a meaningful green recovery.
As an environmentally conscious organisation, we strive to ensure that our projects consider the biodiversity of the local area. Similarly, we try to maximise green spaces and understand the major role it has on mental health. For more information about the work we do, contact us and find out how we can help with your next planning project.
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