Updated: Feb 10
We’re absolutely thrilled to announce that Zero Carbon Guildford has been shortlisted for the Climate Coalition’s Green Hearts Awards 2023!
What is the Green Heart Hero Awards?
The awards take place at the Houses of Parliament on 27th February, and we’ve been shortlisted in the ‘Innovative UK Community Project’ category!
This is a huge testament to the hard work of all our volunteers, and would never have been possible without all the contributions from Surrey residents in driving forward an ambitious and unprecedented project to create a town centre premises focused on protecting our local countryside, reducing local emissions and waste, and showing our fellow residents that you can live a life of less impact without living in a cave.
We’ll be joining representatives from a range of impressive shortlisted contenders such as Olio, Wrightbus Hydrogen Buses, and Hibs FC for the evening, as organisations from across the UK are acknowledged for leading the charge to mitigate and adapt to the accelerating climate crisis.
Former Green Hearts Heroes Award winners make up a pretty star-studded line up, with the likes of Energiesprong UK, Toast beer, and Arsenal FC all claiming an award in 2020, the last time the awards were held. So it’s no exaggeration to say that this shortlisting really deserves the tip of an enormous hat to everyone at ZCG’s efforts, and genuinely puts our charity amongst some of the UK’s leaders in climate action.
We’ll be vying for the Innovative Community Project award alongside two other great projects, Cleaveley Community Forest Garden and Hadleigh Environmental Action Team (HEAT).
HEAT might bring the heat, but let’s hope ZERO is the Hero!
What does this mean for ZERO?
2022 was a fantastic year for Zero Carbon Guildford.
Some of the highlights which reinforce why we were nominated, and then shortlisted, for the award include:
We’ve saved well over 100 tons of CO2e by driving behavioural change in the community
We served at least 6,344 visitors across 2022 with our community fridge, not only cutting 10 tons of food waste but providing support to residents
We became Guildford’s largest volunteer organisation last year, just 9 months after opening the doors to ZERO
Our Sustainable Business Network, which is a joint venture with Uni of Surrey, has now helped over 50 businesses to build a carbon management plan to hit a net zero target
We’ve now had over 35 groups from across the UK visit ZERO to pick our brains and share experience in how to get similar projects off the ground
And being shortlisted for this award means 2023 starts off as a belter too!
We’re not in it for the recognition, but it is really lovely to hear the amazing things people from right across the country - and even the world - are saying about us - last year we featured on a US television channel and in a Japanese magazine!
And hopefully, with recognition comes the ability to scale things up even further, and to support other communities in driving forward projects that genuinely help to build community and collaboration on tackling the greatest challenge life on earth will face (meteor impacts aside obvs).
Last Saturday (28th Jan) in ZERO was a great example of the power of community organising. By 10.30am we were training 55 local residents to be citizen science water testers, aiming to monitor and improve river water quality across Surrey, whilst upstairs on the first floor we trained 35 Energy Champions with Energise South, starting them on a journey to do energy efficiency assessments.
Momentum is building, and we still don’t have paid staff in ZERO. Where so many initiatives plateau, the commitment of our amazing community is pushing us from strength to strength. It’s thanks to you all, our volunteers, ops circle, trustees, and everyone else who’s supported us that’s put us in this position, and although only 2 people can go to parliament to represent us, we could probably fill all 650 MPs seats in the Commons with the people who have got us to this point over the last 3 years.
This truly is a community project, and what a great community it is! THANK YOU.
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