In August 2014, Reading Museum secured a second round of funding from the Happy Museum Project.
Our new project, ‘Where’s Reading Heading?’ looks at the past, present and future development of Reading. It seeks to provoke debate about how Reading will sustain a growing population and build a successful low carbon economy whilst ‘Narrowing the Gaps’ between different sectors in our communities.
Current work being led by the University of Reading, Reading UK CIC and Barton Wilmore, through the Reading 2050 initiative, envisages a smart and sustainable future for Reading. This will involve communities coming together to influence how the town will evolve in the decades ahead.
To promote debate the Museum asked Russell Alsop of local production company Ginger & Pickles to make a short documentary film, drawing together the views and knowledge of a widespread group of Reading people. This has included school pupils, academics, local politicians, business people, ecologists, architects, and residents from our local neighbourhoods.
As part of the project, radio style interviews were conducted. Within them are many views and learnings from experts and active citizens which enabled the film-maker to shape the documentary. You can listen to these on the museum’s SoundCloud (follow the link at the bottom of the page).
We hope our ‘Where’s Reading Heading’ film may encourage you to get involved.
The organisations that took part in the film-making process include:
Reading International Solidarity Centre (RISC)
Berkshire Local Nature Partnership (LNP)
Greater Reading Environmental Network (GREN)
Reading Climate Change Centre
Reading Sustainability Centre
Reading Voluntary Action (RVA)
The Walker Institute, Reading University
Each of these local organisations provides opportunities for Reading residents to become active in initiatives influencing Reading’s future environment. Click on the links below to go to their websites and find out more – the LNP and GREN sites also include directories of other local groups.
Why CCCRdg has launched a campaign for a national
“Monthly Car-Free Work-Day in the UK”.
Reflecting on BBC4´s “Climate Change and Numbers”, Climate Change Centre Reading (CCCRdg) has launched in Reading a campaign for a national “Monthly Car-Free Work-Day in the UK”;
Following the Deep Decarbonisation route set out for a successful climate agreement in Paris at COP21, CCCRdg hope the National Climate March, London on Saturday 7th will stake out actions necessary to divest from dirty energy that not only adds to already high greenhouse levels but also pollutes the air, our common realm, which directly and utterly affects our health. The right thing to do in order to comply with changing to zero carbon fuels is to slow down our “business as usual” (BAS) behaviour.
With a regular Car-Free Work-Day, can UK take a lead on behaviour change divesting away from fossil fuels? That is the question.
The People’s Climate March last September was huge. With around 40,000 people marching in London, 400,000 in New York and many thousands more taking part across the world, together we made history.
2015 needs to be even bigger. The climate talks in Paris this December are crucial if we’re going to protect all that we love. Our movement is growing, and we’re more diverse and determined than ever before.
With a regular Car-Free Work-Day, can UK take a lead on behaviour change divesting away from fossil fuels? That is the question.
Across the UK people are already building change – from divestment of funds which prop up the fossil fuel industry, to front-line communities fighting unsustainable energy extraction and fracking, through to those paving the way for a transition towards a 100% renewable energy future which would bring about an estimated one million new climate jobs in the UK alone.
Meet the CAR-FREE WORK-DAY BLOC on the 7th March to make the link between climate change and switching to zero carbon fuels. Put the climate on the agenda ahead of the 2015 General Elections and the December 2015 Paris United Nations COP21 climate talks.
How to fins us: The Car Free Days UK Bloc will be under the Protecting Our World theme (No.6) http://www.timetoact2015.org/#!blocs/c7hs Look out for the Orange flag to find the general area -then we’ll be there with the CAR FREE DAYS UK BANNER
Let´s work together to help achieve this, it will be an important step in solving and laying a just and fair developing pathway, switching to zero carbon fuels.
[A regular car-free work-day in Reading and UK could fuel an International monthly Car-Free Work-Day which could be an astonishing example of traffic development and public realm. Reading has great potential to embrace the sustainable pathway and become a British role-model in climate change (the air is our all urban common) to honour a successful climate change agreement taking place in Paris December 2015.]
And together let’s continue to power up and celebrate our movement – locally, nationally and internationally – throughout 2015, and beyond
In our efforts to motivate as many people as possible to leave the car for a day and join in our Car-Free Days, Climate Change Centre Reading (CCCRdg) has taken a huge lap forward by campaigning for Car-Free Days until the end of the year.
Yes, we are proud of announcing CCCRdg supporting the Join the Car-Free Work-Day Bloc @ Time To Act National Climate March!
BREAKING: Please see our press release below, we hope you will find the piece interesting,
Climate Change – It’ s time for decisions now! not waste billions on campaigning.
A regular car-free work-day in Reading and UK could fuel an International monthly Car-Free Work-Day which could be an astonishing example of traffic development and public realm. Reading has great potential to embrace the sustainable pathway and become a British role-model in climate change (the air is our all urban common) to honour a successful climate change agreement taking place in Paris December 2015.
Every day more and more people are waking up to climate change. What scientists predicted decades ago is happening right now. And we have little time left to advert catastrophe. But those in power have not yet woken up, or are unwilling to act.
On March 7th, two months before the election, we will take to the streets of London in a creative mass action. We will set out clearly what must happen now to cut emissions and build a better future. No more half-hearted promises: it´s Time to Act on Climate change.
2015 is a crucial year for the climate. in the UK, we must tell politicians seeking election that there is no mandate for climate-wrecking business as usual. Then at UN talks in Paris in December, governments will come together to strike a deal for the climate.
A recent mobility survey carried out by the City Planning Department in Helsinki has revealed that on a weekday 34% of citizens walk and 32% use public transport. The survey results found that many people are now choosing to travel on foot or by public transport instead of taking their cars.
HELSINKI, FINLAND. PHOTOGRAPH: HEMIS/ALAMY VIA THEGUARDIAN.COM
Researchers found that females between the ages of 7-17 traveled most often with an average of four trips a day. People over 65 were found to make more than two trips over the same period. On average, Helsinkians make three trips a day. The survey also revealed that middle-aged females preferred to use public transport compared to males, who were twice as likely to use a car to travel into the city.
The survey took place in September and October 2014 and 3,000 city residents were interviewed. The results of this survey reveal that only 22% people travel by car, down from 27% in 2010.
In May 2006, Helsinki was one of 15 European cities with a green vision. Its green vision was turned into a joint Memorandum which established the European Green Capital Award which rewards environmentally friendly urban living. Cities must encourage their citizens to change their travel behaviour and try alternatives to the car such as cycling, walking and public transport. Efficient urban transport is fundamental to citizens’ quality of life and to economic development.
Reading should get on board a monthly car-free work-day!
As part of a car free day every motorised vehicle should be forbidden in the whole of the Regional area; with the exception of public transport, emergency services, buses and minibuses, taxis and public vehicles of authority (office, transfer of funds, collection of garbage). Certain people can for exceptional reasons benefit from passes delivered by the municipality.
A car free day is the opportunity to make motorists more aware of the environmental impact of pollution and allow better use of public space.
Air Quality Air quality is important for our health, quality of life and the environment. Air pollution is harmful to human health, plants and animals, and also corrodes materials and buildings.
Transport An effective transport system is fundamental to building sustainable and thriving local communities. The challenge is to minimise transport’s contribution to green-house gas emissions, through reducing the need to travel, encouraging the use of more sustainable modes of transport and alternative energy sources, and reducing congestion
Develop a transport infrastructure which supports more low carbon travel options for people in Reading
By developing a friendly pedestrian/cycling infrastructure such as bridges, premier cycle routes. By supporting electrical charging stations for electric vehicles and introducing more cycle hire
Encourage non-car travel for all sectors of the population, through targeted advice, incentives and enforcement
By promoting and helping to develop personalised travel planning, introducing incentive schemes like a monthly car-free work-day and increasing enforcement on parking and bus lanes
Reduce energy use and ‘embodied energy’ in transport infrastructure
By better control of lighting and use of low energy lighting. Reducing unnecessary lighting of street furniture
Manage transport infrastructure and services to prepare for climate change
By developing infrastructure appropriately given the changing climate, reallocating space for public transport and cycling and introducing smarter ways to manage congestion and speed, e.g. with social media and best practice road layouts and divest from fossil fuels
Reduce the air pollution from vehicles
By supporting relevant technology and car-pooling schemes, expanding park and ride system and supporting charging sites for electric vehicles in our sharing economy
Overall we fully agree with the “Outline Development Framework- Reading Air Quality”, however we believe a Reading monthly car-free work-day is a perfect opportunity to build upon London’s success with their clean air initiative, and create Reading’s own sustainable pathway route for its citizens. We would like to put forward this idea to Reading Borough Council of using the site Reading’s Air Quality Management Area (AQMA) during the period of 2015-2020 as a functional space to let local community groups use street space as a sustainability hub to promote Reading to becoming a greener place to live and work in. The “monthly car-free work-day” will promote various green project solutions and can also be a testing facility for monitoring and analysing local community for the council.
We hope a car-free work-day will lead to a change in behaviour, enabling the community to work towards becoming a zero-emissions society.
A regular car-free work-day in Reading could fuel an International monthly Car-Free Day which could be an astonishing example of traffic development and public realm. Reading has great potential to embrace the sustainable pathway and become a British role-model in climate change (the air is our all urban common) to honour a successful climate change agreement taking place in Paris December 2015.
On behalf of the Climate Change Centre Reading (CCCRdg), as Reading’s leader in the green movement against climate change, we would like to ask you for your consideration of our proposed project to help drive Reading’s bid for a monthly “Car-Free Work-Day”.
This is an event that has been held in cities around the world, with areas being closed off to cars thus encouraging people to use more sustainable forms of transport, such as walking, cycling or public transport. The event challenges people to:
Spend one day without the use of a car
Observe the difference this makes to their locality
Reflect on how car use can be reduced permanently
This will help us to achieve our aims of reducing air pollution, developing sustainability and increasing Reading’s green credentials through:
Encouraging people to find alternatives to car use
Reducing emissions / pollution
A Car-Free Work-Day has the potential to improve the quality of life in Reading through a reduction in traffic, and therefore noise and pollution, and also make people more aware of how their own actions impact on the environment. It will also increase Reading’s chances of enrolling for the European Green Capital Award in the future.
We want to strive for community usage of the streets in order to preserve its heritage qualities but also as a sustainable landmark for the future.
Balanced and mixed use of our public space between integrated interest groups; people, bikes, public transport and cars is a kind of damage control, keeping the new agenda safe and sustainable. Especially regarding the cars’ use of the public realm, which is still 80% of street space (if you design mixed use streets you design a healthy city). This high percentage for car use needs to drop dramatically to cope with future challenges. For instance if urban neighborhoods could interact and agree (Empowered interconnection) to regular car free days on, life in our citizen communities would improve considerably.
Our main aim is to bring together businesses, the local community, the Government and those who want to learn about Climate Change, in order to create collaborative momentum to reduce CO2, find new solutions to commuting, increase remote working and develop sustainability in the Thames Valley Berkshire, and beyond.
We hope after the first year trial the Reading Borough Council, who have already evaluated future usage of streets as a historic move and i.e. permanent decision for the Thames Valley Berkshire area, will take action and actually do something that will lead us and a small part of the UK in to new pathway for a shift away from fossil fuels promoting the Reading area as one front leaders in traffic development of turning into city status for 2020 and forth coming…
There are very good reasons to hold community street events in a traffic-free street:
Making use of the space that a car-free day provide~ Boris Johnson
Streets are open and ‘owned’ by everyone and so very accessible
Communities normally suffering from traffic can be opened up
Neighbourhood shopping centres can be revitalized by a traffic-free event
They provide new sites for local street markets which are very popular
Once the traffic is cleared the space opens new possibilities for community activities, particularly in areas needing regeneration – their image can be improved. Communities of different ethnic origins sometimes use streets in different ways, drawing on their own culture.
We would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your consideration and invite you to consider future meetings with us or events to discuss from a business perspective the challenges set out in new agenda of curbing CO2 emissions and contribute to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change IPCC´s proposed reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 50 percent by 2050, necessary if the world is to achieve and to stay below the 2degree target.
Climate Change Centre Reading (CCCRdg) 17 Newbury Close
If the rest of the world follows the example of the Swedish city of Gothenburg, the long commute and work weeks that many face may become a thing of the past. The year-long study will have one group of city employees working for 6.5 hours, while another works for the traditional eight hours a day. A car factory in Gothenburg has already experimented with this model with great results.
I’m not saying that everyone has to offer a 6.5 hour workday for their agents to be happy. I do feel, however, that executives in North America could learn a lot from Gothenburg’s proactive approach to experiment with a solution outside of the standard "nine-to-five" model.
Unfortunately, most of the world’s workforce isn’t lucky enough to live in Gothenburg, and with the ever growing number of commuters in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA) where 3C is located, the typical commuter can face a staggering 80-minute commute to and from work every day—one of the longest commutes in North America! And even in other cities in North America, commute times can range from 20 to 45 minutes. Stack that onto an 8-10 hour workday, and you have one frustrated employee.
Spending that much time sitting in grid-lock can take its toll on your tank – and your wallet, since the price of gas is soon expected be twice what it is today. With more and more employees spending their limited budget on gas to commute to and from work, this will doubtlessly lead to less time with their family, which amounts to less sleep, throwing their balance of life into chaos.
The job market isn’t like it was 30 or 40 years ago, where if you lost your job on Monday, you’d have a new within walking distance from your home by Friday. More and more job seekers are being forced to take jobs farther away from home, potentially for smaller wages. Many households report that they spend much of their budget on fuel and car insurance, with less money for food, clothing and activities for their children.
Here are a few questions to ask yourself: Do they have a job that allows for a flexible start/end time? Do you have a technology solution that can allow them to work from the cloud, reducing their time in the office to 1-2 days per week? If a full time solution is out of the question, can a part-time solution be established (1-2 days per week)?
We have worked a “reduced hour incentive package” into a few employee plans within 3C, and preliminary results have already shown an increase in efficiency and productivity, as well as a reduction in sick days.
The year-long experiment involving city employees in Gothenburg only started in April 2014, so it will remain to be seen how it pans out for them.
I encourage you to take a page out of the Gothenburg play book and be proactive with establishing a plan that takes ‘balance of life’ into consideration, while you still can.
– Have a well-established record of achieving high environmental objectives.
– Commit to ambitious goals for future environmental improvement and sustainable development.
– Inspire other cities through new ideas, best practices and experiences.
Will your city be the European Green Capital 2017? The Commission has launched its search for the 2017 European Green Capital. The European Green Capital Award recognises cities that are at the forefront of environmentally-friendly urban living. The..
New research has found that At 18 sites, the Swedish government’s actions have led to sharply increased emissions of greenhouse gases. This comes despite their pronounced high climate ambitions. Their talk of leadership on climate change cannot be seen as anything but empty words that have no basis in the actual policy, write the think tank Cogito.
The UN climate panel has now published two new sub-reports; one on the impact of climate change and proposals for measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. According to the IPCC, it becomes increasingly clear that humanity is causing climate change while our chance to meet the two degree target and avoid an escalating climate change is drastically reduced.
The Swedish government has a high tail carriage in climate policy. The government writes in its latest climate bill in 2009 that “the two-degree target is the starting point for the measures now need to be taken” and that “Sweden should show leadership by what we do here at home, at work as well as in the EU and internationally.”
All 18 areas:
1. Government has little ambition and unclear goals for climate policy
2. The Government does not seem acting for sufficient climate goals in Europe
3. The Government conducts not proposed measures from their own climate investigations
4. The Government does not have a roadmap to Sweden without climate emissions by 2050
5. The Conservatives appeared and stopped the proposal to strengthen the EU’s emissions trading scheme
6. The Government sold the surplus of allowances (Offsetting)
7. The Government has scrapped the CO2 tax for cogeneration in industry
8. The Government does not coordinate traffic planning with climate objectives
9. Government approves new traffic construction of Stockholm
10. The Government allows the expansion of airports and supports increased flying
11. The Government will allow Waterfall’s investments in coal power
12. The Government will let the State pension funds to invest in the world’s largest oil companies
13. The Government subsidizes fossil fuel
14. Government betrays the promise of climate finance to developing countries
15. The Government supported oil exploration in the Arctic
16. The Government saw its own regulatory proposals for reduced meat consumption
17. The Government has scrapped the tax on fertilizers
18. The Government does not support the expansion of solar energy and offshore wind
The government does, however, remarkably little to live up to these climate ambitions. Decision after decision leads us in the wrong direction, which means that Sweden will continue to fall in the Climate Action Network’s international ranking of countries’ climate policies.
The green think tank Cogito In its report the Government’s climate black list examined the Government’s climate policy over the past two legislative periods. We can at 18 sites show how the government’s actions resulted in dramatically increased greenhouse gas emissions. It involves direct political decisions but also for failing to take action when the government had the opportunity. Here we present seven points from the report:
A principle for all climate finance within the UNFCCC is that the money should be additional, meaning that they cannot be taken from the aid budget. Despite this all means that the government used to climate-related assistance taken from the regular aid budget.
The Swedish government says it wants to be a leader in climate work but Cogitos report rather show great reluctance to take the decisions needed to achieve climate goals, both nationally and internationally.
Although we have not taken the figures for the emissions from all the locations surveyed, shows our summary to the government’s actions have led to higher greenhouse gas emissions of at least 25 million tonnes in Sweden during the last two legislative periods. This represents almost half of Sweden’s annual emissions.
If we add in all the decisions that affect global emissions, such as the government’s actions in Waterfalls and National Pension Funds, the greenhouse gas emissions many times greater. The talk of leadership on climate change cannot be understood as anything other than empty words that have no basis in the government’s actual policies and Sweden will thus leave the responsibility to solve the climate crisis to other countries and future generations.
First ever global assessment of best practices in green growth reveals pathways for success
Published on Tuesday, 11 March 2014
R20 is pleased to announce the release of the summary of key findings from the Green Growth Best Practice (GGBP) book, ahead of its full release in June 2014. This summary report was unveiled at the 1st Global Conference on Partnership for Action on Green Economy (PAGE) in Dubai earlier this month.
The Green Growth Best Practice book is the result of an initiative led by the Global Green Growth Institute (GGGI), and was written by 75 authors in the field of green growth from a variety of organizations, including R20.
Lead authors Christophe Nuttall (R20’s Executive Director) and Tadashi Matsumoto (OECD Senior Policy Analyst), wrote the chapter on National and Subnational Integration that explores approaches to advancing green growth through coordinated national and subnational programs and across government. Several co-authors contributed to this chapter, including Denise Welch (R20’s Director of Research & Technical Initiatives).
By analyzing around 60 specific government programs from different countries and regions around the world, the GGBP makes recommendations for effective green growth approaches, based on the experience of early movers, and provides practical guidance for national and subnational policy planning.
Green growth strategies play vital roles in unlocking synergies between economic growth, environmental protection and poverty reduction, and enabling a transition to an inclusive green economy.
The Synthesis of Key Findings elaborates on nine key actions that enable effective green growth policy:
· Use well-designed planning and coordination processes;
· Establish clear visions, targets, and baselines;
· Undertake robust analysis and balanced communication of the benefits of green growth;
· Prioritize options and develop credible pathways towards targets;
· Design policies to address multiple goals and respond to specific market failures;
· Design public finance instruments to overcome barriers and mobilize private investment;
· Tap the power of public-private collaboration;
· Pursue mutually reinforcing action across all levels of government;
· Build and maintain strong monitoring and evaluation systems.
The report and supporting case studies will also be available in the form of an online “living handbook,” which will feature an interactive interface.
Read the Synthesis of Key Findings here.
via First ever global assessment of best practices in green growth reveals pathways for success – Regions 20.