I live in Ulverston and work in Kendal four days a week and one day in Barrow.
Every Kendal day I used to get into my car, as I am sure hundreds of others do, and drive the 50 miles round trip to Kendal.
Diesel costs were £6 per day and if you take into account wear and tear on the vehicle more like £20 per day (this assumes travel expenses at 40p per mile).
Using the Direct Gov website carbon calculator I worked out that my work travel alone by car emits 2.19 tonnes of carbon every year. This felt like an area of my life that I could change.
According to Andrew Simms (founder of New Economics Foundation) we have 50 months to get serious about Climate Change and the need to do something about it was becoming urgent in my mind too. What could I do to make a difference when I am only one person?
What I did was to buy a Brompton – a folding bike that I can take on the bus to Kendal. I zoom down the road to the bus stop in the mornings, fold my bike in seconds and then amble along the River Kent at the other end, marvelling at the amount of wildlife I see on the way to work.
The journey on the bus is relaxing – listening to music/radio, replying to texts/e-mails, writing notes, reading – some of these I have not done for a while, like settling down to a good book.
I have reduced my carbon emissions by 80 per cent and I save £10 a week on diesel costs alone.
And the best bit – the other day I saw an otter playing in the middle of the river – what a great start to my working day.
The whole experience was shared with a number of children cycling/using scooters to school. Their faces and those of the adults with them showed sheer joy in such a delightful creature.
So go for it. Change how you live your life. You might find the whole experience very rewarding and contribute to saving the planet at the same time.
The question is - what are YOU going to do to make a difference?
Judy Filmore, Ulverston