What you need to know about dirty air and what you can do to change it
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On Tuesday 24th July, ten days after we delivered them a letter with more than 36,000 of your signatures, the government published their new National Planning Policy Framework. The good news is the blocks have been partially lifted, so that turbines reaching the end of their life can be rebuilt. The bad news is there’s still a block on new developments, including small scale community projects.
It’s great that there’s been progress, but we still have work to do. Stay spooned for more updates in the fight for clean energy – because there is no Planet B!
We think wind energy is great! It's clean, it's cheap - and it's an important part of our clean energy mix. But the government has banned new onshore wind in England - putting our national action on climate change at risk and rejecting one of the public’s favourite types of energy.
It’s time to send the government an urgent message about the kind of future we want.
Dear James Brokenshire, Minister for Housing, Communities and Local Government.
Please unlock onshore wind in England by removing the additional planning requirements introduced by the written ministerial statement on onshore wind, issued 18 June 2015.
It’s official, Brits love wind power! Yet despite this, the UK government is making it really tricky for people to build wind turbines - planning regulations are now so tight that no new turbines can be built in England... even if the community wants them! If we want to stand any chance of keeping the promises made in 2015's Paris Climate Agreement, then we must act now!
We want to see a world powered by clean, cheap wind power - not fossil fuels like fracking. That’s why we’re supporting our pals at 10:10 in sending an urgent message to the government about the kind of future we want. Sign the petition NOW to show the government that the British public want onshore wind back at the front of the fight against climate change.
We’ve teamed up with Big Clean Switch to help you power your world with clean, renewable energy. If we switch our homes to clean energy in our thousands, we can make a real difference. Not only will you be saving the planet but you’re likely to save money AND you can switch in less time than it takes to finish an ice-cream.
Hop on board the clean energy train and help turn our big planet into a clean one. Choo Choo!
Interested? Find out more here!
The UK is lucky enough to have a wealth of renewable energy sources right on its doorstep. Sure, us Brits like to grumble about the grey days, but let's look on the bright side - our weather gives our country a huge potential to tap into clean energy, in particular wind, which we think is pretty awesome!
We live in a world where the effects of climate change are increasingly real; from melting ice caps to rampant forest fires, it can no longer be denied that human-made carbon pollution is affecting our fragile planet. The scientific evidence is clear: global warming is real and already impacting people around the world. The question now is, “ what are we doing about it?”
Every passing year, we see changing patterns of precipitation, including more intense rainfall events around the world, dramatic changes in the arctic, changes in agricultural growing seasons and rising sea levels and ocean acidification. Some of these changes in our climate will have dramatic ecological and social consequences. The cruel irony of climate change is that people in the developing world, who can least afford to adapt to climate change, will pay the steepest price for the 200 years of industrialisation and pollution from the developed world. It truly is an issue of climate justice.
It is more urgent than ever that we take steps to dramatically reduce global greenhouse gas emissions – and to do it in a way that equitably shares the burdens and risks of climate change among the nations of the world. Ultimately, we have to break the link between economic growth and development from natural resource extraction and depletion.
There is no quick fix to solve climate change, but we know what we need to do. We must:
That’s why we’re supporting 10:10 as they call on the government to give clean, renewable wind energy a fair chance!
We believe that only a strong, global, and grassroots movement is capable of delivering the low carbon economies of the future. That’s why Ben & Jerry’s has a long history of fighting for climate justice and finding ways to reduce the environmental impact of our business. In 2002, we launched a carbon offsets program for our Vermont manufacturing facilities. In 2007, we ran our first global warming advocacy campaign in partnership with the Dave Matthews Band. Over the course of 2015 Ben & Jerry’s teamed up with Avaaz to help almost 400,000 of our aspiring activist fans take action on climate and become a part of the global climate movement. We’ve invested early and often in efficiencies throughout our manufacturing facilities, supply chain, and Scoop Shops to increase energy efficiency and shrink our carbon footprint.
Nearly all businesses have greenhouse gas emissions associated with their operations, and that includes Ben & Jerry’s. We rely on agriculture for our main ingredients, especially dairy, as well as manufacturing to make our products, trucks to transport our finished products and freezers to keep our ice cream cold. As a dairy company, we know our carbon footprint isn’t the greatest, and are working throughout our operations to reduce it. We are working with our farmers to reduce methane emissions from farms, we lead the change to a cleaner, greener freezer in the United States and built the Chunkinator at our Netherlands factory which helps power the factory from ice cream bi-products. We also know what we’ve done is not nearly enough and we must do more. We make progress and report on this each year in our our Social and Environmental Assessment (SEAR) Report. Read more about the steps we’re taking to reduce our carbon footprint and our plan to get to 100% clean energy at all of our U.S. sites by 2020.
At Ben & Jerry’s we have a long and proud history of campaign for climate change. In 2015 we ran a global campaign, Save Our Swirled, which called for a greener, cleaner future ahead of the UN climate summit. Supporting 10:10’s Blown Away campaign is the latest instalment of our climate activism!
We are adding our voice to 10:10’s campaign to show the love the UK has for wind power with the hope that the UK government will lift the planning ban on onshore wind turbines. This would allow more turbines to be built giving the UK access to more clean energy and becoming less reliant on fossil fuels.
Ben & Jerry’s regularly partners with NGOs, charities and movement building networks that have all the policy know-how in issue areas, such as Stonewall for our Marriage Equality campaign and the International Rescue Committee for our Together For Refugees campaign. Partnering with the experts is essential, as they know how we can take change to the next level!
It’s real. It’s happening now. For us, it’s not just about polar bears and ice sheets, it’s about people and it’s an issue of economic and social justice.
We’ve always had a commitment to minimizing the negative impact our business has on the environment. We’ve made investments in energy efficiency and waste reduction at our manufacturing facilities, installed bio-digesters that turn waste to clean energy at our European manufacturing facility.
In 2015 the government introduced rules that have effectively stopped anyone building new onshore wind turbines in England after pressure from a vocal minority. According to the government, people are ‘fed up’ with wind turbines, but we think that’s just not true: the latest government research shows that people love wind! In fact, 76% of the British public support onshore wind and only 7% oppose it. Onshore wind is not only the cheapest energy source out there, but also one of the most popular.
The government has blocked financial support for large scale onshore wind – this affects big wind farms that plug into the national grid and power our kettles.
Onshore wind has also been blocked in the planning system, which means that local authorities can’t give the go-ahead for even one wind turbine, and a farm of them would be impossible.
Meanwhile, the government continues to give financial support to more polluting forms of energy such as coal, oil and gas. This is a real climate justice issue that requires action – as the moves to block wind energy in favour of fossil fuels go against the UK’s commitments to the Paris Climate Agreement to move towards renewable energy.
Nearly all businesses have greenhouse gas emissions associated with their operations, and that includes Ben & Jerry’s. We have assessed our carbon footprint, and are working throughout our operations to reduce it. Through our ‘Caring Dairy’ programme, we are working with our farmers to reduce methane emissions from farms. We are also leading the change to a cleaner, greener freezer in the United States and our Chunkinator at our Netherlands factory helps power the factory from ice cream bi-products. We also know this is not nearly enough and we must do more. We make progress and report on this each year in our Social and Environmental Assessment (SEAR) Report.
Yes, Ben & Jerry’s is committed to reducing its absolute GHG footprint. We believe corporations should set ambitious goals that are rooted in science. Ben & Jerry’s is committed to de-linking the growth of our business with the growth of our GHG emissions. We’ve committed to an 80% reduction in our absolute emissions by 2050, despite an ambitious plan to grow our business. Between now and 2020, we’ve committed to reduce the emissions intensity per unit of production by 15%.
More than half of our company’s carbon emissions come from the production of our ingredients, most notably, milk. On farm emission are 42% of the overall life cycle emissions of our company, so in order to make real progress to reduce our footprint, we’ve got to partner with our family dairy farmers to improve manure management, reduce enteric emissions from the herd, and move towards better cropping methods that promote soil health and sequester carbon. In addition, we’ll continue to drive efficiencies throughout our manufacturing plants, our logistics network and our frozen supply chain.
100% of the electricity used at our European factory in Hellendoorn comes from wind power! The factory is also powered by natural gas, a percentage of which is bio (green) gas generated through our bio-digester.
10:10 are a carbon cutting charity providing positive, practical projects and campaigns for people to take action on climate change into their own hands.
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