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Last Updated: Saturday, 21 April 2007, 14:21 GMT 15:21 UK
Town seeks carbon neutral future
Carbon neutral sign
The Biggar have been asked to back the carbon neutral campaign
A South Lanarkshire town has launched an attempt to become Scotland's first carbon-neutral community.

Under the plan, the people of Biggar would grow their own food, create their own electricity and recycle more.

At a meeting in the town's Municipal Hall on Saturday local activists urged fellow residents to join the campaign.

Scientists from Edinburgh University have agreed to help Biggar, which has a population of 2,000, to establish its current carbon footprint.

The Carbon Neutral Biggar project has been backed by the town's two schools, church and several businesses.

Leaflets have been distributed with suggestions on how to "reduce energy consumption and resulting carbon dioxide emissions".

Residents have already been encouraging people to rent Al Gore's documentary film on global warming, An Inconvenient Truth .

John Riley
If we can do it as a community and we can encourage other communities to do the same thing, then we can start a groundswell
John Riley
Carbon Neutral Biggar

The organisers are in touch with the Cheshire village of Ashton Hayes which is also trying to become carbon neutral.

One of those behind the campaign, local estate agent John Riley, said the campaign is about everyone doing their bit to tackle global warming.

"If we can do it as a community and we can encourage other communities to do the same thing, then we can start a groundswell and we hope that this will gradually just snowball," he said.

"We have got the schools involved. We have got churches involved. We have got the Brownies and Scouts involved so its a complete community project."

The project has received backing from the town's Conservative councillor Hamish Stewart and Friends of the Earth Scotland.

Professor Stephen Tinsley, chief executive of the Sustainable Development Research Centre, in Forres, called for other towns in Scotland to try to become carbon neutral.

"I whole-heartedly support the Carbon Neutral Biggar project, it's an absolutely terrific idea and I would like to see other towns, including Forres, doing something like this," he said.


SEE ALSO
'Binding' carbon targets proposed
13 Mar 07 |  UK Politics
Homes must be greener, says Brown
12 Mar 07 |  UK Politics
Towards a carbon neutral death
02 Mar 07 |  Magazine
Carbon offsets 'harm environment'
20 Feb 07 |  UK Politics
Village aims to be carbon neutral
18 Jan 07 |  Merseyside

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