Just a quick one to wish you all seasonal greetings and to remind you of some of the ace things you, as a hugely loved supporter of I Count, have helped us achieve in 2007.
This time last year a legally binding framework to cutting the UK’s carbon emissions was merely a twinkle in Tony Blair’s eye. Now it’s only a matter of months before it becomes law. Oh yeah, we delivered a further 150,000 of your pledge cards to No.10 in October just to let Gordon Brown know you’re counting on him to deliver a fair and effective bill.
Through joining forces at Glastonbury with Stop Climate Chaos coalition members, Greenpeace, Water Aid and Oxfam, I Count saw over 70,000 new people signing up to the campaign. We assume that the remaining few thousand festival goers at the waterlogged West Country festival were on board already or were literally stuck in the mud.
Having hosed down the I Count banners after Glastonbury, we all headed to Wem-ber-ley for Live Earth where I Count was the chosen campaign partner. Al Gore’s record breaking eight-city spectacular was watched by an estimated audience of 2 billion and if by chance you were one of the few to miss the show we've got five more copies on DVD to give away. Click here to enter the competition.
On the eve of the Labour Party Conference Stop Climate Chaos, the coalition behind the I Count campaign, received a letter from Gordon Brown in which the PM insisted that global climate change can be limited to 2 degrees C. In the letter Mr Brown said “all developed countries” would have to commit to emissions reductions in order to take on the problem.
Our extensive research over the last year revealed that politicians are 34% more likely to take notice of grown men dressed up as polar bears than they are of people with beards and placards. We therefore sent our sleuth of anxious Arctic beasts to Bournemouth to meet and greet politicians at the Labour Party Conference. I Count director Ashok Sinha even managed to get an audience with Gordon Brown but only after agreeing to shave.
I Count launched its ground-breaking Community Groups Map in late September. The online networking tool enables local groups to work together on climate change issues while allowing likeminded people to join forces and share resources. The map has already seen 500 groups sign up and we look forward to seeing quite a few more in the run up to Parliament's vote on the Climate Change Bill in spring 2008.
I Count’s ‘Irresistible’ short film, which was screened on the Pyramid Stage at Glastonbury and on the big screens at Live Earth, picked up a prestigious Green Award for ‘Best Audio Visual (under 100k)’. What’s more our ‘Step-by-Step Guide to Climate Bliss’ book (pictured) scooped the gong for ‘Best Use of Copy’ at the fancy-pants ceremony in October at London’s Guildhall.
With so much riding on the UN climate change talks in Bali this December, we wanted to make sure environment secretary Hilary Benn knew we were banking on him to back our corner. Nearly 1,800 of you emailed Mr Benn prior to his departure, which - added to the climate change petition of over 2.6 million names he received at the conference - certainly let him and his fellow policymakers know what we expected of them.
Without your continual support we couldn't have achieved any of the above but there's still a whole lot to do in 2008. The Climate Change Bill will be voted on in the spring and we need to ensure that it's an effective piece of legislation that will really stop climate chaos. First up, we'll be melting the hearts of MPs in the run up to the vote with a mass barrage of Valentine cards, so please watch this space for more information.
Once again, thanks for being part of I Count in 2007 and please accept all of our best wishes for 2008.
Your friends at I Count
Ashok, Lucy, Sarah, Alison, Niamh, Joanna and Andy