How to Build a Happy, Healthy and Green Community by Paul Hannam (first published in West Sussex Country Times)

Paul Hannam

By Paul Hannam, Chair of Greening Steyning

As Sir David Attenborough and others have warned 2021 is a turning point if we are to get on top of the climate and ecological crisis we are all facing.

Whatever your politics, whatever your lifestyle, whatever your values or interests, we have to rise above our individual differences to work together for the common good.

Will we look back and see the pandemic as a watershed in history, the moment when we acted as global citizens and community champions? If there is one definitive lesson from the Covid-19, it is that we have an astonishing capacity to unite under a common purpose. If we can maintain this resolve, we can prevent climate and ecological collapse.

Each one of us has a role to play as individuals, families, employees and members of a community. On our own, it is very hard to make the changes we need to. Working together, we can transform our communities. Through mutual support and community action, street by street, we can achieve our vision.

In November, Glasgow is hosting the crucial COP 26 conference, the biggest summit ever held in the UK, where leaders from all around the world are expected to strengthen their commitments to reducing carbon emissions.

Here in Steyning, Bramber and Upper Beeding, we are committed to taking positive action. Despite the lockdown, we have set up many active projects to protect biodiversity, promote green homes, encourage cycling and walking and reduce waste and our carbon footprint.

We are about to hold our biggest and most important event, and we invite you to join us on April 27 2021 at 7.30pm.

Our MP, Andrew Griffith, and well-known author, Isabella Tree, from the Knepp Estate will be speaking about national, regional and local initiatives.

You will be inspired by what a small community can achieve when we have the vision and the determination to act. You will hear from a wide range of local speakers about what we are doing to improve our community, and how you can join our rapidly growing movement.  Residents will explain how our projects are reducing carbon emissions and improving the quality of all our lives.

We are going to make Steyning, Bramber and Upper Beeding one of the greenest, healthiest and happiest communities in the UK by 2030.  Why not join us and do the same for where you live!

Find out more and register for the event at 2030