'Protect our planet before it’s too late': Islington Together climate emergency festival line-up revealed

A wind farm in north west England

A wind farm in north west England. Climate change should be treated as an emergency in the same way as the Covid-19 pandemic, according a study from the Glasgow Caledonian University Centre for Climate Justice published in July - Credit: PA

The line-up of a two-week festival to encourage people to help tackle the climate emergency has been announced. 

'Islington Together' is being organised by the council which is calling on the community to help reduce the 680,000 tonnes of annual CO2 emissions generated each year in the borough.

While the council is already working to reduce the 10 per cent of the borough’s emissions that it is responsible for, it wants to work with residents and businesses to reduce the other 90pc.

Held in the run-up to the United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26), the festival will provide an opportunity to discuss what residents and businesses can do for the cause, as well as what funding, powers and legislation it needs from central government in order to achieve net zero carbon status by 2030.

The festival begins on October 18, with a launch event featuring keynote speakers Polly Billington, a councillor in Hackney and CEO of UK100 - a network of elected leaders committed to cleaner, more powerful communities - and David Harrison, chair of the environmental charity Islington Living Streets and co-founder of Footways London.

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Themes for the festival include green energy, travel, food, the outdoors and recycling, with guided "tree walks" and a bike repair workshop on the programme.

Other events include a guided walk to discuss the benefits of Islington’s people-friendly streets neighbourhoods, an online tour of the Bunhill 2 Energy Centre, which uses waste heat from the London Underground to power hundreds of homes, and community-run food growing workshops.

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A discussion on the council’s efforts to retrofit council homes with more environmentally-friendly energy sources is set for October 27.

Research published last month indicates Islington is one of six London boroughs most at risk from climate change.

Islington's eco chief, Cllr Rowena Champion, said: “The climate emergency is a very real, very pressing issue, and it’s clear that we must all take urgent action to protect our planet before it’s too late."

The programme runs until October 29.

See the full programme at bit.ly/islington-ecofest.

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