The Get Serious about CO2 campaign asked Camden Council to commit to cutting CO2 in the borough by at least 40 per cent by 2020 – and produce an action plan detailing how it’s going to happen.

What can the council do?

The council could influence 80 per cent of Camden’s emissions – as it has a big say over energy, housing and transport. Action to cut carbon emissions could have huge benefits for people living and working in the borough. If the Council were to implement energy saving measures, for example, it could help Camden residents cut bills, cut carbon, and could create up to 422 green jobs in the borough, to give it an economic boost.

Following our campaigning, Camden Council have signed up to the 40% by 2020 target but we want to help ensure that they achieve it.

We have participated in a number of events and workshops with the council and other local community groups to suggest ways in which the council can implement carbon savings projects, as well as supporting groups and individuals in cutting carbon emissions in the borough.

We continue to work with Camden Council to help ensure that Camden meets its target of reducing emissions by 40% by 2020, and are very pleased that Camden Council supported Friends of the Earth’s call for Local Carbon Budgets that would mean every council was supported to do its bit in coordinating local action on climate change. Read more about Local Carbon Budgets.

Campaign supporters

In 2009-2010 We campaigned across the borough getting the public to sign postcards to send to Camden Councillors, to encourage them to Get Serious. Over 355 postcards were signed asking the leader of Camden Council to commit the council to Get Serious about CO2.

We received support for the campaign from a number of local community groups, from Transition groups from Bloomsbury to Hampstead, and local businesses and organisations including Alara Wholefoods, Camden Arts Centre, Camden Coffee House, Camden Cycles, Camden Garden Centre, InSpiral Lounge, the NUS, Planet Organic, Triyoga, UCH, and Unison. On a national level the campaign is also supported by Environmental Protection UK and the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health.

We also asked people in Camden to pose for photos with their most serious face, to show their support for the campaign. We had support from Frank Dobson, MP for Holborn & St Pancras, as well as Raj Chada, ex-leader of Camden Council.

MP Frank Dobson asks Camden Council to Get Serious about CO2

MP Frank Dobson pulls a serious face

MP Frank Dobson, pictured right, pulls a serious face through a giant mock antique gilt photo frame, to urge Camden council to ‘Get Serious’

We spoke with Frank about the campaign and the possibilities to cut CO2 in Camden. He agreed that energy saving in particular has lots of benefits: “Energy saving measures are good for the environment, they help people keep warm, as well as saving money, and they also create lots of jobs. These are local jobs which can’t be outsourced to cheap labour overseas. The work has to be done here by people in our streets and our blocks of flats.”

Frank also spoke about the importance of energy saving in a speech in the House of Commons on 3 July 2009 – read the full text of his speech – and he agreed that there’s a lot the Council can do on a local level to reduce CO2 emissions.

People in Camden asking the council to Get Serious:

Read more about the national campaign on the Friends of the Earth website, ask your council to Get Serious about CO2 and read case studies and news on the councils who’ve signed up to the campaign.