We are a virtual Green Living Group ‘meeting’ in Southampton to explore ways we can reduce our carbon footprint at an individual and household level. Most of us are members of Avenue St Andrew’s URC. We are using the Dorset Green Living Guide (greenliving.sustainabledorset.org) looking at food, energy, transport, waste, water and community.
We are seven in the group, which seems about right for Zoom discussion. We each study the specified section, then zoom for an hour every two weeks to discuss and share questions/action plans. Our group includes people who are very knowledgeable and experienced in some of these aspects of sustainable living, as well as some of us who are much more beginners. But we are finding that everyone has something to contribute.
The Guide is detailed and practical. We are appreciating the practical emphasis, and the links to a wide range of resources. It’s not perfect, but it seems to be serving us very well as a framework and launching off point. Increasingly members are emailing the group in-between meetings with questions, critique, research and responses to other people’s questions. A strength of the Dorset Green Living Guide’s approach is that there is no attempt to make everybody take the same steps. We are able to support each other in coming to differing conclusions about which actions are appropriate for our own circumstances.
We are six weeks in, and anticipate it will take us to the end of July to work through all the issues. So far it’s proving a challenging yet supported way to get to grips with these complex matters whilst in lockdown.
The Sustainable Dorset project has made their guide freely available on their website. Out of courtesy, though, we did contact them and have made a donation.
Diagram illustrating our goal: sustainable living