Gillian held a meeting with representatives from EcoChi, Extinction Rebellion (XR) and The Time Is Now at St Paul’s Church in Chichester.
The MP organised the meeting after she met with around 50 members of XR in Parliament. During their hour-long meeting, they debated and discussed a wide range of issues surrounding climate change and the environment.
The local meeting was expanded to include EcoChi who are a local group that offer advice across West Sussex on how to live more sustainably. Many of the attendees were also from a group known as the ‘Time Is Now’. Local activists met with a member of Gillian’s team on the banks of the River Thames during an organised protest that surrounded Parliament earlier in the summer.
The meeting in Chichester welcomed lively debate about the current climate agenda and what needs to be done at all levels from the individual right the way through to international efforts.
Gillian has already played an active role in promoting the issue of climate change in the House of Commons through her work on the APPG for UN Sustainable Development Goals and debates in the Chamber.
After the meeting Gillian said, ‘I focussed more on environmental concerns when I became an MP, just over two years ago, so the meeting was a great opportunity for me to hear what constituents think. We discussed the priority areas and what actions we could take as a government, as individuals and as a global community to help tackle climate change.’
The meeting lead to plenty of actions for the MP both to ask questions of varying Government departments and undertake visits to improve her knowledge of the issues.
Gillian commented saying, ‘As I am sure you can imagine there were a lot of ideas and I will be following up on of these. I am planning a visit to look around passive houses to understand how moving forward we can live in a carbon-neutral environment. I also have a number of questions to ask relevant Ministers to understand if there are plans to increase taxes on air-fuel and what incentives will be introduced for green businesses. I will discuss with local councils what it will take to provide access to water refill stations across the City and to see if there is any support available to help set up a pop-up repair café to tackle our throw-away culture.’
The Chichester MP concluded by saying, ‘This is such an important issue for all of us and the more I learn, the more I understand the urgency to change how we use our planet’s precious resources.’