Climate Week in Dorset highlights local action

Climate Week in March has become a regular event and chance to highlight how people can work together to reduce their carbon footprint, both at work and home. 

Roger Bell is Environment Officer at Unisons Dorset Local Government Branch. Since starting the role late last year has wasted no time getting involved in promoting energy saving and green skills. He has already linked up with South West Unionlearn to deliver Energy Best Deal sessions and saw Climate Week as a way to get the word out to more council workers.

Over the week the Unison Branch supported the Corporate Sustainability group, set up four lunch time events to make workers at Dorchester County Hall aware of some of the issues that face the Dorset environment.

Electric Pool CarRoger felt the week was a great success and highlighted the events that had taken place: “On Monday over 25 people attended a talk on “Our Changing Climate” from Kim Dowsett, Climate Change Officer from the Environment Agency. A real cross section of the work force made it through a severe hail storm including Councillors, managers and staff. A highlight was hearing the latest weather data from the Met Office and some of the solutions the Agency are putting in place to address the challenges ahead.”

Tuesday’s event saw local food produces set up stalls in the Council reception area to encourage staff to buy local and reduce food miles, whilst on Wednesday the electric vehicles fleet were available to have a go at in the car park. The new electric pool car was shown off, with one to one talks on its benefits and driving round the block.

Electric BikeWhile in the reception, both electric and non electric pool bikes could be taken for spin, outside (with a helmet of course). All these vehicles can be booked by staff, to be used for  work journeys.

Finally on Thursday, Wessex Water set up an information desk and give away lots of different devices to save water around the house, including 4 minute egg timer for timing showers, shower heads that needed less water to work by aerating the water flow and the usual “hippos” to reduce the water needed to flush the toilet.

Roger said; “All the drop-in events were well attended and it showed the wider workforce, on a very practical level, that Climate change is happening and solutions are available - if we all do our bit.”