By Michelle Monaghan
GOSPORT BOROUGH COUNCIL has announced two new funding schemes for local community groups. The new community fund will give grants of up to £20,000, while a new heritage fund will provide grants of up to £50,000. The council has stated that it will look for projects that improve sustainability and tackle climate change among the applications.
It comes as a report about Setting Climate Commitments for Gosport was released by The University of Manchester this month. It looks at climate change targets for Gosport that were obtained from the commitments laid out in the 2015 Paris Agreement. Results from the report said:
- Gosport emissions need to stay within a “carbon budget” of 1.5 million tonnes CO2 emitted between 2020 and 2100.
- This 80-year carbon budget represents just seven times the emissions seen in 2017.
- To stay within this budget, emissions need to decrease by 12.6% every year, starting in 2020.
These results affirm that the council is right to focus on local sustainability and climate change initiatives as they could be the solution to achieving better outcomes for Gosport.
In 2018, the Friends of the Earth Gosport and Fareham were winners of a ‘Local Group of the Year’ award. The group is a part of the larger Friends of the Earth network and they campaign on national and local issues, share resources, provide advice and hold events, actions and stalls.
Recently, the Festival of Climate Change was held at the Gosport Discovery Centre from the 11-18th of February. The festival featured various events such as Waste Prevention Bingo, recycling craft, climate change talks and storytelling. It was an excellent way for kids to engage in climate change activities during the half term while learning about the importance of climate change and sustainability issues.
From February 27th to March 12th, Gosport Fairtrade Action is running their Fairtrade Fortnight. The event aims to encourage more people to choose Fairtrade and help save their favourite foods. Activities will include engaging with the public outside of supermarkets to raise an understanding of the difficulties faced by farmers in numerous countries in adapting to climate change.
Given these examples, it’s likely that future funding programs will continue to focus on climate change and other environmental problems with the hope that more people will catch on and contribute to reducing the impacts of climate change.
In the meantime, the council is currently looking for communities of between 250 and 8000 households in Gosport to take part in the Greening Campaign. The campaign works in three phases to help communities across Hampshire to act on climate change and biodiversity by teaching and supporting them to use what’s available to them. Additionally, ‘Switched On Gosport’ is helping residents to save energy, money and carbon by accessing free energy-saving measures.
Gosport’s future looks a lot brighter with a combination of the council and community involvement in tackling the climate change crisis.
To find out more about the new community and heritage funding schemes, visit: https://www.gosport.gov.uk/gbcgrants
For information about the climate change situation in Gosport, visit: https://www.gosport.gov.uk/climatechange