6 Jul 2018

Carbon emissions, global warming, and greenhouse gases – what do they have to do with you? Find out why your organisation should care about climate change and what to do about it.

Background of Carbon Literacy

The concept of Carbon Literacy started in Manchester when organisations crowd-sourced a carbon management action plan for the city. The idea is simple: if you work, live or study in Manchester, you should be able to receive a day's worth of training on the causes and consequences of climate change.Carbon Literacy Logo

Put simply, the training is about; "Understanding what I need to do, why I need to do it, where I can get help to do it, actually doing it, and seeing that I've done it."

The Carbon Literacy Project, run by the Carbon Literacy Trust, is based on the key aim that if we are to cut our carbon emissions by the kind of reduction targets demanded of us by science, by 2050, then we will need to change the culture as well as the technology.


Development of Carbon Literacy in Wales

Rhodri Thomas, who delivers training on sustainability for Cynnal Cymru - Sustain Wales, has been working with the Carbon Literacy Trust in Manchester to bring the idea to Wales. Scotland already has an established programme of Carbon Literacy training as does the BBC across the UK.
Cynnal -cymru -logo

Cynnal Cymru is now working with Invest in Nature Cymru and others to design suitable courses for all sectors of society in Wales.

It is important to note that The Carbon Literacy Trust maintains an accreditation and quality control standard so in order to label a course as Carbon Literacy, you first have to go on a certified course yourself, and then use materials and approaches that have been certified by the Trust.


An important part of the concept is that people should learn from others like them. So far, training has been delivered to individuals and teams within several public and community organisations, including:
- Public Health Wales
- The National Museum of Wales
- Grwp Cynefin
- Renew Wales
- Community Land Advisory Service
- Women's Institute
- WCVA

Cynnal Cymru and its partners are in the process of developing new courses and arranging for train the trainer sessions to enable these to be delivered on a peer to peer basis.

Each person who successfully completes a course by identifying practical actions that they can take at home or in their organisation, committing to these and monitoring their impacts, receives a certificate. The project partners believe that this is a useful first step on a journey to further qualifications in diverse but relevant fields such as management of buildings, installation and maintenance of technology, food growing and land management.

Rhodri says; "Climate change is going to affect all of us one way or another and certainly it will define the lives of today's young people as they age. It is a matter of existential expediency that we all do everything we can to foster a low carbon culture. This means not just embracing renewable energy and energy efficient technology but understanding the cycles of materials and energy in which our lives are embedded and what we ask of these natural cycles by the lifestyles we adopt.

The climate has always changed and the earth has been much warmer than it is today, but our whole global civilisation has evolved within a narrow band of temperature that fluctuated with a relatively slow pace.

If we care about ourselves and the people we love, never mind precious landscapes or myriad other species, we should care about climate change and resolve to become Carbon Literate."  


Get involved

Please contact Cynnal Cymru if you would like to find out more about Carbon Literacy training and accreditation


Tackling Climate Change Guide - Front Cover

Do you want to safeguard against climate change risks?


Our new 'Tackling Climate Change' guide is designed to give you a basic understanding of climate issues and where to find further support to help you manage your climate risks.

If you have any queries or would like to know more about how to help tackle or mitigate climate change visit our web-pages or email: inc@wcva.org.uk