Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Victoria's Green Matters - 17th June

Deal With IT's Secretary Victoria Nicholls writes a regular column in the East Kent Mercury:

Zero Carbon Britain? Is this a dream that someday in the farthest future we will live in a world that produces little or no carbon emissions? No, this can be achieved by the year 2030 according to a new report by the Centre for Alternative Technology.

The future envisioned in this report may be different from the present day but paints a picture of a world where values have changed but many things we take for granted are still possible. We will still be able to drive to work but our cars will be electric ones. We will still be able to fly away on holiday but only long haul flights will be available and are considered a treat.

Our diet will need to change although a roast is still possible if less frequent – poultry or pork instead of lamb or beef, which take up too much land and produce too much greenhouse gas. The British landscape will change. Millions more acres will be devoted to vegetable and grain growing. Trees will be grown for buildings and biofuel. Exotic fruits will be a luxury, as food imports will have been halved.

Many jobs will change and workers employed in traditional industries such as steel or cement production will need to retrain to work on insulating buildings or to return to working the land.

The report, which is backed by four universities, the Met Office and many experts, claims that the country can eliminate greenhouse gas emissions to the tune of 637million tonnes of carbon dioxide in just twenty years. These reductions will be achieved by ending wasteful uses of energy, increasing the production of renewable electricity and totally changing land use and farming. Any remaining carbon will be captured by growing a variety of trees on land freed from animal grazing.

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