Community action

There are many local examples of community iniatives to address climate change. For some, this is a direct benefit, for others it is an indirect or secondary benefit.

  • Brendon Energy – A community co-operative set-up in 2011 to establish local renewable energy, which has installed a number of solar electricity schemes, including in Wiveliscombe on the roofs of the Children’s Centre and the Community Centre.
  • Brendon Orchards Cooperative – Established in 2007 to benefit the local community by helping people to use fruit which would otherwise go to waste. Brendon Orchards is a community venture which can help with pressing apples for juice, provides access to equipment and training, and organises apple days and other activities, such as wassailing and blossom picnics.
  • Plain Pond Allotments – Good for growing, wildlife and local people, with a great website.
  • Wiveliscombe Community Herb Garden – A place to to grow, harvest and learn about herbs on a disused piece of land at the back of the Community Centre, which was created in early 2013.
  • Wivey Energy – Record of solar PV panels in Wiveliscombe, which shows that the equivalent of 57% of the town’s domestic electricity is generated by solar panels in the same area.
  • Wivey Solar Club – A community bulk-buying scheme for solar electricity panels promoted during spring/summer 2014, which resulted in ten new installations with a generating capacity of 31.5 kWp.

Neighbouring Areas

  • Forum 21 – A voluntary group based in West Somerset dedicated to raising environmental issues and fighting climate change. It takes its name from the Agenda 21 movement formed to take the message of local sustainability through into the 21st century.
  • Taunton Transition Town – Set up in 2008 and with links to our neighbouring Transition communities and with Taunton Deane Council. Aims to create a happier, fairer and stronger community and develop a vibrant local economy. We are about “doing” things together, but equally about being a community group with a positive outlook based on mutual wellbeing, practical collaboration – and fun!
  • Taunton Area Cycling Campaign – Formed in 2016, the group promotes and campaigns for better recognition of cycling in and on the approaches to Taunton.
  • Transition Town Wellington – Part of the Transition Network, we are active in several areas such as food cooperatives, promoting gardening, veg growing in schools, energy conservation at home and local energy generation from the sun.
  • Quantock Eco – A group of volunteers raising awareness of environmental issues with those who live or work in and around the Quantocks area in West Somerset. Helping people make the transistion to a more sustainable lifestyle and meet the challenges of the 21st Century regarding energy, waste, food, transport and water.
  • Tiverton Area Community Transition – Started in 2008 as part of the Transition Network Initiative, with an initial focus on raising awareness about the challenges arising from global warming and peak oil and encouraging local initiatives to meet those challenges. Recent the group has helped people learn new skills, such as tree pruning, tool sharpening, bicycle maintenance, knitting and patchwork, permaculture and cider making. Activities include the establishment of allotments, an annual apple event and lending juicing equipment to local groups and individuals, apple tree planting in public places and a monthly on-line freecycle.
  • Other Somerset and neighbouring groups include: Transition AthelneyBlackdown Hills Transition Group, Sustainable CreditonSustainable Frome, Transition Langport, Transition Minehead and Alcombe, Green WedmoreSustainable Wells.

Taunton Deane Borough Council

  • Energy efficiency and generation measures include: all cavity walls insulated at Deane House in October 2011, a 35kW solar PV array on Taunton’s Station Road swimming pool in July 2012,  and a second large solar installation at Blackbrook Leisure Centre completed in July 2013.
  • Carbon Management and Local Resilience Strategy – (PDF) November 2013
  •  £1.5m spent on solar PV panels and £400,00 on external wall insulation for its housing stock – News, 3 November 2015.

Somerset Initiatives

  • Hills to Levels – A partnership between Somerset farming and nature charities that is helping landowners and farmers to farm in a way that reduces flood risk throughout the county while enhancing wildlife and producing high quality food.
  • Incredible Edible Somerset – A grassroots network of home and community food growers and community organisers working to build a socially-just and ecologically sustainable food system in Somerset.
  • Somerset Energy and Environment Network – An umbrella organisation collecting together groups and individuals who are concerned about the energy and environment future of Somerset. It aims to act as a central hub to facilitate the ability of these groups to work together, share expertise and knowledge and provide a platform for them to generate interest within Somerset.
  • Somerset Wildlife Trust – Protecting vulnerable wildlife and preserving wild places for 50 years. Somerset Wildlife Trust manages 72 nature reserves, provides wildlife-friendly land management advice, campaigns and educates to make sure Somerset remains one most wildlife-rich places in the UK.

Other initiatives – Please email if you have a group or project to add to this page.

Raising awareness and taking action on climate change

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