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May 13, 2020

Earth, Climate & Birmingham online workshops

Following a successful online gathering Our Cities & Climate, Footsteps held four online workshops to obtain local community and neighbourhood insights into the gathering’s main themes. Summaries of the workshops with conclusions are available below:

Each workshop explored one aspect of a just transition to net zero carbon for Birmingham.  We began with an introduction from a guest speaker, which was then be developed by our invited guests, before being thrown open to further contributions and discussion by participants.

“the Council will lead by example and seek to be net zero carbon by 2030 – again ensuring that this is just – taking communities with us,”

Birmingham City Council Climate Emergency Declaration.

The workshop will be feeding views and ideas from Birmingham’s communities into the City Council R20 Climate Emergency Taskforce.  In particular, Footsteps would like to hear stories from communities and provide the Taskforce with a view from the grassroots of what is needed and examples of what is already working well.

Image: ‘Floella’s Future’ flower display by Birmingham City Council: highlighting the need for action on climate change, at the Chelsea Flower Show 2019.

Background: Earth Day Gathering

A reflective summary of the Gathering and links to the pre-recorded presentations and other resources have been placed on the Footsteps website.   The Gathering raised a number of key reflective questions:

  • As we experience a Sabbath for the Earth, how can inaction translate into climate action?
  • Young people have something to say: are we ready to listen?
  • How can we create a new model of development that supports people and planet?
  • Could reimagining ‘the city’ as we know it help us to find more sustainable and community-focussed ways of living?
  • Following the lead shown by the youth climate strikers, how can we genuinely listen to and include our city’s diverse population?

The connections between the Covid-19 pandemic and the need for urgent climate action were also a theme running through the Gathering.  

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