The Greening Campaign was a national movement to motivate people to reduce their energy consumption and therefore lower their personal and community carbon footprint. The campaign was the brainchild of Terena Plowright, a resident of Petersfield in Hampshire who wanted to make a difference. The campaign is great fun’, Terena said. ‘It gives the community a way to work together to tackle Climate Change and makes it a positive experience instead of a nightmare’.
The campaign was so successful that since then many other villages and towns throughout the UK have joined together to begin to address reducing their CO2 emissions and reducing the amount of water they waste.
Phase 1 was designed to get everyone in a community to take the first small steps to being ‘green’. We wanted people to do this en masse: lots of people making small changes makes a big difference and then everyone can take on slightly bigger challenges later together!
So what did we achieve?
Our Climate Change questionnaire in 2008 (563 households responded) Questionnaire results had revealed that people would do more if they knew they were not acting alone. Armed with this information, we carried out Phase 1 of the Greening Campaign during 2008-9.
As part of the campaign, we asked each member of the community to commit to meeting at least 5 carbon-reducing challenges from 8 listed on the card which had been issued to each household. Actions as simple as turning the tap off when brushing teeth, to turning down central heating!
An amazing 758 of Wallingford’s homes and businesses (24% of the community!) pledged to reduce their carbon footprint by making small changes to their lifestyles. This meant that over the year we monitored the Challenges, Wallingford residents saved 386 tonnes of CO2 and 398 tonnes of water. These savings will continue to be made if homes keep on making those small changes.
Wallingford had the highest percentage of the community taking part in Phase 1 of the Greening Campaign of any town in the UK at that point.
The Challenges were:
||Challenge||Money saved||Kg CO2 saved|
|1||Turn off lights when you leave a room.||£6||23|
|2||Turn the thermostat down by 1° C or put on a sweater before the heating.||£50||330|
|3||Turn off all standbys.||£32||130|
|4||Wash laundry at 30°C.||£10||45|
|5||Walk if the journey is less than a mile.||£10||22|
|6||Boil only the amount of water needed for your cup of tea or coffee.||£6||29|
|7||Draught-proof around doors and windows and cover letter boxes and keyholes.||£25||150|
|8||Turn off taps when brushing teeth.||£11||2.9|
(Savings calculated over a year.)