Latest news on the Climate Action Fund
30th January 2020
Last Autumn, we informed Partnership members of the newly announced Climate Action Fund from the National Lottery’s Community Fund. This presents a huge opportunity to support communities across the UK to take action and demonstrate what is possible when people take the lead in tackling climate change.
In order for Bristol to achieve its ambitions to become carbon neutral by 2030, it is critical that all our communities are actively involved in the transition and Bristol Green Capital Partnership has worked with others to develop a collaborative bid to this fund which, if successful, could help us to build capacity for climate action and resilience to climate change in Bristol.
There was huge interest in this call, with over 630 applications submitted from across the UK and competition will remain fierce. At the end of January, just 40 projects were longlisted and only 15 will receive funding in the spring. We are excited to announce that this collaborative bid was selected as one of 40 projects through to the next stage.
In light of this news, Professor Jim Longhurst, co-chair of Bristol’s Advisory Committee on Climate Change, said “the enormous changes that are required for Bristol to become carbon neutral by 2030 mean that we must engage with all communities in the city, explore why and how change will occur and help build understanding, capacity and capability for change and community resilience. This bid is a critical part of how this can be achieved.”
The project’s approach
In addition to exploring the ‘why and how’, the project’s approach is to listen to and learn from communities in neighbourhoods across Bristol – some of whom have had to become resilient and adapt to weather the challenges they face.
Our proposal will start with up to five community partners – organisations serving one of Bristol’s specific geographic communities, or communities of interest or identity. These partners will work with members of their communities to develop an understanding of local priorities before drawing on the wealth of expertise and support available in Bristol. Together, community partners and appointed climate action partners will produce an ambitious plan to reduce carbon emissions generated by housing, transport, food, energy, waste, increase biodiversity or prepare for the impacts of climate change.
If the bid is successful, it is likely that organisations specialising in these themed areas will be invited by communities to act as climate action partners and to support their plans.
All partners in this project will need to be committed to understanding and learning from each other – from leading climate action through community co-production – and the plans developed will need to help people likely to be impacted most by climate change to create radical new approaches to making the city more sustainable. This means reducing carbon emissions but only through projects that also improve quality of life – e.g. health benefits, increased mobility, warmer homes, better access to services or nature and green space, or skills and employment opportunities.
The role of Community Partners
Community Partners will be advocates for and work in partnership with other groups that serve their community in Bristol (either geographic or of interest or identity). They don’t need to be climate or environmental experts – indeed it may even help if some aren’t – but they need to be committed to understanding and leading climate action through community co-production. They need to help people likely to be impacted most by climate change to create radical new approaches to making the city more sustainable.
Community organisations interested in being a Community Partner have been asked to submit expressions of interest by 13 February. More information is available here.
The role of Climate Action Partners
Climate Action Partners in this bid will respond to the requirements of the Community Partners in enabling the activities prioritised by communities to be planned and delivered.
This means they are likely to provide a ‘menu’ of tried and tested project templates that Community Partners could adapt for use in specific locations and scenarios, potentially with technical advice about the delivery and impact of proposed activities.
These templates are likely to come from successful previous projects the Climate Action Partners have delivered in other neighbourhoods or cities. They could also be new initiatives that Community Partners or grassroots groups have developed and run on a small scale but offer the potential to be scaled-up or replicated with other communities.
For more information
We would like to talk to organisations who might be interested in acting as a Climate Action Partner and able to play an active role supporting community groups with their plans and approach to climate action.
Our Climate Action Partner Workshop on 21st February will provide an overview of the Climate Action Fund, details of Bristol’s bid so far and explore how we can work together. Click here to register.
In particular, organisations with experience and a track record of supporting communities to reduce carbon emissions generated by housing, transport, food, energy, waste to increase biodiversity or otherwise prepare for the impacts of climate change are encouraged to attend and find out more.