Guide

A Globally responsible Wales

In its broadest sense, sustainability is also about peace, equality, and fairness which is why the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals include specific actions toward Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions while in Wales the Well-being of the Future Generations Act speaks of being Globally Responsible.

Everyone has different values, and so on this page we will be collating a wide range of actions you can take.

We are starting with crisis in Ukraine but our plan is to create a resource that signposts to a wide variety of causes and campaigns from across the globe.

ReStart Refugee Employment

The Welsh Government’s ReStart campaign is encouraging companies to employ refugees and migrants. They are committed to Wales becoming a Nation of Sanctuary, which welcomes people fleeing persecution to live well, work and thrive in communities throughout Wales.

All refugees welcome

The Living Wage Foundation’s parent charity Citizens UK is a leading player in the  community sponsorship scheme, which allows community groups to support the resettlement of vulnerable people fleeing conflict and take the lead in welcoming them to live in their communities.

Women Seeking Sanctuary Advocacy Group Wales are an advocacy and research group which works with and for refugee women and their families to  enhance their ability to rebuild their lives.

How to support Ukraine

Leaders and members of various communities have already come together to take actions that demonstrate what this goal means in practice.

The UN Global Compact and the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) developed a Business Guide to urgently respond to Ukraine’s humanitarian crisis. The Guide provides concrete action for businesses to support the Secretary-General’s three-month Flash Appeal for people in Ukraine, and a Regional Refugee Response Plan for the situation outside, under the leadership of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees.

How to help Ukraine: Where to donate to appeals and charities supporting people amid Russia invasion (inews.co.uk)

DEC Ukraine Humanitarian Appeal | Disasters Emergency Committee

Donate to UK for UNHCR (unrefugees.org.uk) as an organisation

How you can support animal protection organisations in Ukraine | Eurogroup for Animals

Ukraine crisis: donate now to protect children – Unicef UK

Speaking with Children about the War in Ukraine (cityofsanctuary.org)

Sustainable transport and active travel

We rely on transport as part of daily life; whether to get to work, school, hospital, or leisure activities. Relying on fossil fuel powered cars as our main mode of transport can have negative implications on our health and well-being due to high levels of air pollution, low levels of physical activity, and stress.

Transport emissions from fossil fuels contribute towards climate change and can increase air pollutants. In 2014, 12.77% of greenhouse gas emissions in Wales were from transport; amounting to 5.92Mt CO2e.

Climate change related extreme weather patterns may increase the frequency of which transport infrastructure will need to be repaired or replaced.

Redesigning our transport infrastructure to support active forms of travel can increase community cohesion and improve health and well-being.

There is potential to increase green jobs through renewable fuel technology development and implementation.

What the public sector is doing:

World / Europe:
The EU has a strategy for ‘low-emission mobility’ which sets out priorities of increasing transport efficiency, low-emission energy technology, and zero-emission vehicles take-up.

UK:
The UK government has a report outlying future transport plans; ‘ Low Carbon Transport: A Greener Future – A Carbon Reduction Strategy for Transport (2009)‘.

Wales:
The Welsh Government has put in place an ‘Active Travel Act (2013)’ and an‘Active Travel Action Plan’ to help get Wales cycling and walking.

The Welsh Government has recently consulted on ‘ A Clean Air Zone Framework for Wales’ designed to advise local authorities on how to reduce air pollution from transport and other sectors.

What the third sector is doing:

Community transport providers enable isolated or disabled people to remain connected to their community.

Living Streets Wales also campaigns for better opportunities for walking and challenges the dominance of cars on our streets.

Sustrans Cymru has a number of resources and campaigns to encourage active travel and safer streets
– their ‘Bike Life Cardiff’ report sets out the challenges and opportunities for active travel in Cardiff.

How you can make a difference:

Reduce your car use where possible by working from home, taking public transport, or by cycling or walking to your destination.

Avoid flying and if you must fly consider off-setting emissions by contributing to tree planting projects.

Develop a travel plan for your work or project and consider joining an electric vehicle car club.

Join a local walking group to enjoy the benefits of this free, low-impact exercise or consider setting yourself an ‘Active Travel’ goal for health reasons.

Why saving water matters

Being water efficient not only helps to reduce water wastage but as an organisation, you pay for all the water that passes through your meter – so it makes good financial sense to ensure you are not letting any of it go to waste. Taking simple inexpensive measures can typically reduce your water consumption by up to 50%.

Saving water is also good for the environment and will help to reduce the carbon footprint of your organisation. Cleaning and treating water uses valuable energy and resources, and if water levels fall, the wildlife in wetland habitats may suffer. Also, if you are heating your water prior to use, any reduction in water consumption will also have a positive impact on your energy bills.

Calculate your water usage

As with carbon foot-printing, it is important to understand how much water you are currently using in order to reduce your impacts.

The following resources are available to help you in this process:

Water Footprint Assessment

Reduce your water usage

Simple, quick measures to reduce your water usage include installing a water-butt, water-saving taps, and low-flush or dual-flush toilets. More ideas for ‘simple changes’ to help you save water and reduce leaks can be found from Waterwise and The Carbon Trust’s Energy and Water Efficiency’ guide.

Dwr Cymru offer businesses Water Efficiency Audit.

They estimate that most small businesses (or organisations) can typically achieve a 20 – 50% decrease in the amount of water they use.

Their Rainscape project also provides ideas and links to further resources for ‘rainscaping’ buildings; from simple rainwater collection to more ambitious projects such as green roofs. There is also information about ‘porous paving’ which is increasingly required due to recent changes in planning consents.

The Future of Mobility

The strategy also contains details of the next steps for the government’s Future of mobility grand challenge.

Alongside the strategy, the Department for Transport (DfT) has published the summary of responses to its Future of mobility call for evidence.

Although not overly relevant to us here in Wales from a policy point of view, there are lots of lessons to be learned on the future of mobility and issues of air quality, active travel and the South Wales metro area. It can be used to look at the problems surrounding current transport trends and ideas for the future including case studies.

The document states the below definitions which are useful in this context:

Active travel: The terms ‘active travel’ and ‘walking and cycling’ are used in this document
to encompass a range of methods of active mobility, including trips made by wheelchair,
mobility scooters, adapted cycles and e-bikes.

Car clubs (sometimes known as car-sharing): Car clubs use electronic systems to
provide customers unattended access to cars for short-term rental, often by the hour.
Business models can be categorised into round-trips, where the vehicle must be returned
to its home station, and flexible, which allows one-way trips. Vehicles may be owned by
individuals and lent out on a peer-to-peer basis via an intermediary platform, or form part of
a fleet owned by a single organisation.

Demand responsive transport: A flexible service that provides shared transport in response to requests from users specifying desired locations and times of pickup and delivery. Dial-a-ride services scheduled through next day or advance bookings are a traditional example.

Dynamic demand responsive transport: More recent applications of demand responsive transport seek to work dynamically, adjusting routes in real time to accommodate new pickup requests often made minutes in advance.

Fractional ownership: An ownership model that involves a group of people purchasing or
leasing a good (such as a vehicle) and splitting the costs.

Micromobility: The use of small mobility devices, designed to carry one or two people, or
‘last mile’ deliveries. E-scooters and e-bikes are examples.

Mobility as a Service: The integration of various modes of transport along with
information and payment functions into a single mobility service. Recent services that
allow customers to purchase monthly subscription packages giving them access to public
transport and private taxi and bike hire schemes are an example.

Ride-hailing: Ride-hailing services use smartphone apps to connect paying passengers
with licensed taxi drivers or private hire vehicle operators who provide rides for profit.
Ride-sharing (sometimes known as car-pooling): Formal or informal sharing of rides
between unlicensed drivers and passengers with a common or similar journey route.

Ride-sharing platforms charge a fee for bringing together drivers and passengers. Drivers share trip costs with passengers rather than making a profit.

Shared mobility: Transport services and resources that are shared among users, either
concurrently or one after another. Public transport, or mass transit, as well as newer models
such as car-sharing, bike-sharing and ride-sharing, are all types of shared mobility.

Current UK Car Statistics

  • 74% of adults have a driving license (80% of men and 69% of women)
  • 76% of households have access to a car (35% having two or more)
  • 61% of all personal trips are made by car (78% of personal trip mileage)
  • 85% of people travel by car at least once a week
  • 87% of people agree that they need to own a car in their current lifestyle
  • There are six cars for every ten people in the UK but the average car is unused 96% of the time.
  • Parking spaces occupy around 15-30% of a typical urban area

Air and Noise Pollution

Air pollution remains the top environmental risk to human health in the UK. It is worse in towns and cities and road transport accounts for 80% of nitrogen oxide concentrations at the roadside. The social cost of sleep disturbance, annoyance, and not to mention health impacts such as heart attacks, strokes and dementia from noise pollution was estimated at £7-10 billion in 2010.

Congestion

The time lost as a result of congestion costs the UK economy approximately £2billion a year before we consider the serious environmental costs of driving that is not fuel-efficient in stop-start traffic.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Transport is the largest emitter of greenhouse gases in the UK, accounting for 27% of all emissions (road transport accounting for 91% of these emissions).

Health Issues

The lack of physical activity due to modern lifestyles and reliance on personal cars is a cause of obesity. Around 60% of adults in Wales are overweight or obese, with the UK currently having the highest obesity levels in Western Europe.

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