Get involved with Europe

A few months ago, Transition Tynedale were approached by Richard Adams about an initiative he was trying to start within the European Economic and Social Committee. This would involve a study of grass roots/local initiatives responding to impending energy issues. One of the key groups under investigation would be the Transition Movement and one of these would be Transition Tynedale.

If you’re interested in understanding the Eurpoean Union’s current stance on Energy descent, take a look at the Energy Roadmap 2050.

In Richard’s words:

“It came out of an idea I had when we were discussing an information visit to a new Finnish nuclear power plant and I thought that we really do need to cover the energy reduction/localisation agenda so proposed looking at Transition.”

Richard’s Proposal

Here’s Richard’s submission for funding:

“Energy transition goes local” –visits by EESC members of Transition Movement projects in the energy field for a low-carbon future in different EU Member States/ June to September 2012

Briefing notes

Members will be exploring a grassroots initiative which is seeking to educate and involve
people in understanding and making a contribution to the transition to a more sustainable way of living, especially in modifying our use and reliance on energy. Each country and each community approaches these issues in their own particular way so there is a lot to learn.
The visits will be informative for members but should also be seen as an opportunity for a two-way flow of information, with members responding to questions from the group they visit about the EESC, and the EESC’s views on sustainability and energy. Before each visit the secretariat will provide members with a few the most important documents and opinions as background in case they are not fully informed on these issues.

The Transition Movement’s motivation is to stimulate a local community response to climate change and peak oil and is therefore of great interest to the Committee, which is developing its work on how to encourage public engagement on understanding energy issues.

Members are therefore being asked to evaluate what they see and learn during the visit and prepare a short report – of between 1,000 and 1,500 words – which the secretariat can then consolidate into an overall review.

Members may find it useful to get answers from the people who are involved in the project to these questions– they will provide a framework for their reports. Local partners for each initiative will be informed that members will be asking for this information (by a copy of this briefing note) but members are free to also ask additional questions of their own.

  • What is the name of the initiative?
  • Who started the initiative?
  • What was their motivation?
  • What is the main objective of the initiative?
  • What sections of the local community are involved?
  • How important is the consideration of energy use?
  • What are seen as the main successes of the initiative?
  • What targets and what hopes does the initiative have for the future
  • What are seen as the failures of the initiative?
  • What are the most important difficulties or barriers to this type of grassroots action?

It would also be useful to know what questions members were asked about the EESC or the EU generally.

Take Action Now

Richard will be responsible for leading the study of activities within Transition Tynedale. If you would like to be involved and feedback your opinions, motivations and actions to Richard, then contact me (Pat) at I will pass on his email/telephone so you can make contact. Here’s another fantastic opportunity to help shape opinion and direction from the bottom up, and help our transition to the future.

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