Published on September 26, 2009

People are talking; are governments listening?

people are talking

We’ve been posting the results from the citizens votes all afternoon and have now also started comparing them to the results that have come in from timezones east of Kettering; China, Australia and Tokyo for example.

But the bald numbers hide the huge richness of debate that has gone on at the 15 tables here in our dark conference room on the edge of the town.

There are people here who came knowing quite a lot, but there are also people who knew very little. However, veryone has engaged and brought their own experiences to it.

People have talked about the small steps they are taking in their own lives to cut their carbon emissions; and sharing information about technology to do so. Others are sharing their fears about what climate change means for them. Others remain sceptical of the debate, the cost to them and to the country. But all are still here after 6 hours with minimal breaks.

What is striking is that the majority want urgent action. In addition, the majority also believe that the richer countries should bear most of the cost. We are now asking them to develop recommendations for the governments going to Copenhagen. But in Kettering, and around the world it is clear that citizens are desperate to be heard by our leaders.

Will they listen?

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