Feature: No one is too small to make a difference

Nick Ruxton-Boyle, director of environment at Marston Holdings explains why no one is too small to make a difference when it comes to air pollution and climate change. 

I recently attended the Air Quality News northern conference and heard some excellent presentations across a wide range of AQ related topics. Talking to delegates and presenters, it occurred to me that most of our current solutions for improving air quality also have very good decarbonisation credentials.

As we move out of the pandemic, climate change is returning to the top of the political and public agenda and decarbonisation is increasingly being talked about in decision-making and investment across the UK and wider supply chain.

Central government now requires carbon reduction plans to be in place for all major contracts and most local authorities have already declared climate emergencies.

persons right foot on white wall

Citizens are also more informed about the implications of climate change, particularly with the many natural disasters across the world now being attributed to it.

As we move ever closer to COP26 in Glasgow, I am pleased by the number of organisations advertising across all media about carbon and climate change.

For example, Amazon has launched a pledge for businesses to achieve net-zero carbon by 2040 and many other brands which have been advertising their products for years are now highlighting their carbon ambitions.

Turning this ambition into action takes leadership and change. We are starting to see leadership in both politics and business, as demonstrated in the above pledges. Even some of this year’s Chelsea Flower Show Gardens are based around sustainability and the impact of climate change.

Talking about leadership we are working with Oxfordshire County Council on an ambitious programme in Oxford.

The city council has welcomed the new World Health Organisation guidelines which recommend stricter limits on the safe level of air pollutants. The council is one of only a few to set voluntary citywide air pollution reduction targets and plans, in partnership with the county council, include the first Zero Emission Zone, a workplace parking levy and traffic filters.

I have talked about personal responsibility in this blog before and strongly believe that consumer and customer habits are the key to environmental improvements decarbonisation.

If we start to buy and use sustainable and low and zero carbon products the market will respond. To quote the great climate leader of our generation Greta Thunberg – ‘no one is too small to make a difference’.

For further information please contact Nick on 07767 833 034


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