Climate change rally hailed success

A LEADING Suffolk conservationist returned from a London rally at the weekend convinced it was a worthwhile show of public strength for the Government to take urgent action to combat global warming.

By David Green

A LEADING Suffolk conservationist returned from a London rally at the weekend convinced it was a worthwhile show of public strength for the Government to take urgent action to combat global warming.

An estimated 30,000 people attended the rally which was held in Trafalgar Square and involved speeches from climate activists and celebrities from stage and screen.

Dawn Girling, chairman of the Suffolk Wildlife Trust, was among hundreds of people from the region who attended the event, organised by the Climate Change Coalition in the run-up to next week's international talks in Nairobi.


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“It served its purpose in raising awareness, pulling more people in to the campaign and showing Government that there is a head of steam for action.

“The Government has been saying the natural environment is important but doing nothing to protect it,” she said.

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“I would also like to see more people understanding that changes they make to their lifestyle can make a difference in slowing down climate change,” she added.

At the rally, activists urged the Government to negotiate an international deal to keep global warming to less than two degrees centigrade, and to lead by example by introducing a Climate Change Bill into the Queen's speech which would delivers annual cuts in UK carbon dioxide emissions.

They also want to see Britain assist developing countries to adapt to climate change.

The rally took place only a few days after publication of the Stern Report which set out the financial costs of climate change.

A host of top names including comedian Rob Newman, singer KT Tunstall, actress Miranda Richardson, TV presenter Simon Amstell and rock group Razorlight appeared at the event.

Tunstall, who took to the stage to perform for a waiting crowd bearing “Stop climate chaos” placards, said: "I'm here today because of the situation with the environment. We are screwing it up, we are making a real mess. Today is about raising awareness that we need to change our behaviour.”

Tunstall said she felt anyone who had a degree of success and had a voice has a "responsibility' to put that to good use.

"I'm not trying to tell people what to do. I'm not perfect. I boil the kettle twice sometimes, but it's about knowing that's a bad thing to do and wanting and needing to change that behaviour.”

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