At the monthly meeting of Cork City Councils Energy Management team, Brian Cassidy of the Intensify project team briefed those p[resent on the aims and objectives of the Intensify project. A robust discussion took place highlighting the need for and the difficulties associated with getting communities more active in terms of reducing their carbon emissions.
The general consensus at the meeting was that those communities in Cork City that are already on the low carbon journey could be used as examplars to show other communities and people what can be done.
Communities also need to be motivated to act. Cheap finance and cost savings are key persuaders in terms of changing peoples lifestyles.
Corks commitment to mitigate against the production of carbon through participation in the Covenant of Mayors, creating a Sustainable Energy Climate Action Plan (SECAP) and signing up to the goals of the revised Paris accord are also critical success factors. This commitment needs to be backed up by action. Local Government need to extend that commitment into the communities they represent. e.g. Industry, transport, housing neighbourhoods, etc. Local Government also needs to make it easier for people to be low carbon by promoting and extending walkways and cycleways. Transferring commitment into action is the real challenge in Climate mitigation. To achieve this community engagement is the first step.