Greening Thatcham and the West Berkshire Green Exchange

At the 2nd February Earthing Faith network gathering we heard from Richard Foster and his involvement in Greening Thatcham and the West Berkshire Green Exchange.

Richard shared how he had been convinced of the reality of climate change through a talk he had heard through his church and as a result helped setup Thatcham Good Life, which is a group of people living in or around Thatcham in West Berkshire who are concerned about the warming of the planet due to CO2 emissions. Together they carry out three areas of activity:
  • Outreach – helping people to become aware of the problem 
  • Lifestyle Change – looking at how lifestyles might have to change to meet a 80% reduction in CO2 emission levels
  • Communication and Campaigning –  including lobbying politicians at local, national and European levels and supporting national organisations, especially charities, with similar objectives.

Richard and the Thatcham Good Life group then went onto help Thatcham adopt the Greening Campaign, and setup Greening Thatcham. They chose 8 simple activities that people could carry out in their homes to conserve energy and natural resources, and then delivered a card to every household in Thatcham with these “challenges”. Each household was asked to display the card in the window of their home when they had completed, or were doing, 5 of the 8 challenges. Cards displayed were then counted.  The total result was 217 cards counted which translated to CO2 savings of 145,07 kg, water saving of 221,751 litres and a financial saving of £26,928.

Another benefit of this work has been the local council helping to start the West Berkshire Green Exchange, which meets quarterly to allow West Berkshire’s green and sustainability groups to network and share information. It has been a rgeat forum to come together, hear a speaker and share ideas, and has helped provide a unified communication channel to the council.

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