Climate change

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Climate change

News and views from the RSPB on climate change and what you can do about it.
  • Less than one month: sign up to Speak Up

    The excitement is palpable in the air, the bunting is being strung, fountain pens are scribbling invitations to MPs, rickshaw drivers are oiling their wheels and musicians are warming up their voices

    It can only mean one thing: there is less than a month to go until Speak Up For The Love Of, which is on 17 June. Over 5000 people have already signed up to attend, so why not join them?

    If you'd like to come along, you can still sign up here.

    There's plenty of time left and once you've signed up we'll send you more details about the day.

    Speak Up will be the largest ever climate lobby of Parliament. It means that we'll be asking you to go and have a chat with your new MP and tell them about climate change and why it's a threat to the things you love. It's all ahead of a big United Nations climate conference in Paris later this year where we want the UK Government to play an important role in a new deal on climate change.

    17 June might look a little bit like the People's Climate March back in September 2015; photo: The Climate Coalition

    If you've never done anything like that before, don't worry, you won't be the only one, there'll be plenty of instructions and people on hand from The Climate Coalition and RSPB to ask advice from.

    If the rickshaw comment threw you, then let me explain - MPs who meet their constituents on the day will be transported in style in rickshaws to their 'constituency' somewhere along the Thames or South Bank.

    After the lobbying action has finished, there'll be a rally with a stage, music and some famous faces that we'll be revealing in the near future.

    RSPB will have a meeting point in Westminster with some RSPB faces to help you find your way around the day.

    We'll be there speaking up for the wildlife we love that will be affected by climate change. We hope you will too.

  • Keep calm and carry on (deploying renewable energy of course)

    By Pip Roddis, Climate Policy Officer

    As we know, renewable energy is vital part of the toolkit to mitigate climate change and reduce climate impacts on wildlife. The RSPB uses renewable energy across many of our nature reserves, including solar panels, sustainable biomass and small-scale wind turbines, and later this year we will be putting up a medium sized wind turbine at our UK Headquarters.

    This wind turbine alone is expected to generate the equivalent of two thirds of the RSPB’s total UK electricity needs, and it is estimated that it will reduce UK emissions by just over 1000 tonnes of carbon dioxide every year.

    We know that if appropriately sited and properly managed, renewable energy technologies can be deployed whilst also protecting wildlife and habitats and they deliver significant carbon savings. The RSPB favours a broad mix of renewables including solar, wind and marine energy technologies, as long as they are sensitively sited to avoid impacts on wildlife and the wider natural environment.

    As one of the UK's leading environmental organisations, we think it is important for the RSPB to play a proactive role in leading action on tackling climate change and deploying renewable energy. However, the transition to a more sustainable energy system will need to happen right across the UK economy.

    It is vital that the newly elected Government maintains its commitment to renewable energy, and continues to support renewable energy developments that are genuinely low carbon. We have written elsewhere about the issues surrounding biomass power stations, which can emit more carbon than they save, yet continue to receive low carbon subsidies.

    The UK is currently on track to meet its renewable energy targets, but there is still a long way to go, and this Government is going to have to show leadership and ambition in order to keep us on course and maintain a stable policy environment for renewable energy. So let’s keep calm, and carry on.

     

  • David Cameron: remember your climate pledge

    My boss, Martin Harper, RSPB Conservation Director, has already blogged about what the new Government could mean for our wildlife.

    The dust is still settling and many questions remain unanswered, but we can be sure that one of the biggest challenges for the Government (and for wildlife) will be climate change.

    Fortunately the new Government is committed to lowering our emissions in line with our domestic and international commitments. It might feel like a hazy and distant memory but, as Greg Barker (former Conservative Climate Minister) has reminded us today, David Cameron made an important pledge on climate change only a few short weeks ago. In this pledge, coordinated by Green Alliance against the backdrop of The Climate Coalition’s Show the love campaign, our Prime Minister (and the other main party leaders) committed to strong domestic and international action on climate change if re-elected. We strongly welcome that commitment.

    On June 17, thousands of us will be joining The Climate Coalition in London for Speak Up For The Love Of, the largest ever climate change lobby of Parliament, to call on this new Government to live up to that pledge and to go beyond it.

    You can sign up and find out more here.