Speaking out on sustainability
As part of our commitment to becoming a low-carbon, sustainable community, Quakers have been speaking out about how environmental and economic injustices challenge our testimony.
QPSW is working with Friends across the country to call for political change for sustainability. QPSW can help meetings explore the sustainability crisis and find focuses for action. In 2013, we’re helping Friends find out and speak out in particular about the following issues.
London Quakers calling for government support for the green economy
May 2013: Take action on the Tar Sands
Take action: Tar sands
Oil extraction in the Canadian tar sands has been described as the most carbon-intensive and environmentally destructive industrial project in history.
However, in 2013, the European Union has the opportunity to keep tar sands fuel out of Europe. Find out how to take action with our Tar Sands briefing.
Please check back soon for updates, or sign up to our Earth and Economy email updates.
Take action on the Energy Bill
UPDATE APRIL 2013: We are still waiting to hear when the Energy Bill’s Report Stage will be. This is when Parliament will take an important vote on the Bill and any changes that are put forward. This provides further opportunity to persuade your MP to vote for a better Bill.
Importantly, an amendment has been put forward by Conservative MP Tim Yeo to introduce a 2030 decarbonisation target to the bill immediately. This would avoid parliament waiting until 2016 to decide whether to introduce such a target, as the Government currently propose.
You can call on your MP to support Tim Yeo’s amendment by writing to, emailing or meeting with them. If you want more information about this amendment, please contact Chris Walker at QPSW on the details below.
The government's new energy bill could determine for decades to come how the UK regulates and generates electricity. With the right ambition, the government could commit to radically reduce the UK’s climate impact, whilst tackling fuel poverty in the UK and creating many green jobs. The bill will be debated in Parliament this spring and is due to become law this year.
Despite calls from churches, campaigners, businesses, and the Committee on Climate Change, the government have not set a target to cut carbon from our power sector by 2030. Such a target would indicate the long-term direction of the UK’s energy and climate change policies, and help persuade investors to support the renewable energy sector. The bill also fails to support action to make our power system, and the way we use power, more efficient. Energy efficiency measures can help reduce the UK’s climate impact and make electricity more affordable: good news for the nearly 4 million households in the UK who struggle to pay fuel bills.
As part of our commitment to becoming a low-carbon, sustainable community, Quakers in Britain are calling on the government to build a renewables-based power system by 2030 in order to help build a sustainable and fair economy. In campaigning for a more ambitious Energy Bill, we are joined by The Church of England, The Methodist Church, the Baptist Union and the United Reformed Church.
This spring, you can take action to persuade your MP to vote for improvements to the bill when it is due to return to Parliament in March. You could email, write to or meet them to call for the following improvements to the Energy Bill:
- An amendment to commit now to decarbonise the power sector by 2030.
- An amendment to enable energy efficiency incentives to be introduced to the bill.
- Take action to tackle fuel poverty
You can find out who your MP is, and their contact details at www.theyworkforyou.com
You can provide your MP with a full policy briefing. This briefing has been jointly produced by Quakers in Britain, the Church of England and the Baptist, Methodist and United Reformed Churches.
A sample email you may wish to send is available here. However, it’s always best to adapt it to make it your own.
For more information please contact Chris Walker, or telephone 020 7663 1009
Climate Jobs Caravan: May 2012
In May 2012, the Sustainability & Peace Programme and Quakers across the country supported the Climate Jobs Caravan.
Campaign Against Climate Change Trade Union Group travelled to over 20 cities to gather support for their campaign for government investment in one million ‘climate jobs’. A number of events were hosted and supported by local meetings across the country.
Find out more about climate jobs and the Climate Jobs Caravan.
Stop Climate Chaos Coalition
QPSW is a member of Stop Climate Chaos, a national coalition of organisations calling for urgent climate action by government. The coalition’s combined supporter base of more than 11 million people spans over 100 organisations, from environment and development charities to unions, faith, community and women's groups.
The Robin Hood Tax
Quaker Peace & Social Witness is one of over 100 organisations backing the Robin Hood Tax Campaign.
The proposed RHT, (which is, more technically, referred to as a Financial Transaction Levy (FTL), would take the form of a 0.05% levy (50p in every £1000), applied internationally on a range of financial transactions such as the buying and selling of currencies, bonds and derivatives. The money raised would be divided with 50% being available for government use in the country of collection and 50% divided equally between climate change adaptation in developing and achieving the Millennium Development Goals. Supporters claim that it could raise as much as $400 billion per year.