Friends Of Carbon Copy: mySociety

by Ric Casale

Friends Of Carbon Copy: mySociety

The Carbon Copy team is delighted to collaborate with mySociety, the not-for-profit organisation pioneering the use of online technologies to help us become more involved in civic life. They are the people who have developed such indispensable tools as TheyWorkForYou, WhatDoTheyKnow and FixMyStreet, making it easier for us to do everything from understanding what happens in parliament to informing our local council of problems that need attention, such as potholes or broken streetlamps.

mySociety’s aim is to empower people everywhere to become informed and active citizens, helping us in shaping the decisions that impact our lives; in contributing to community life; in holding power to account. With this far-reaching aim in mind, they have turned their attention to the climate crisis. Their reason is simple: there really is no more important an issue facing our society today.

In championing democracy, mySociety considers how participatory and deliberative approaches can be useful in finding consensus on the collective decisions we need to make to address climate change. TheyWorkForYou is not only a parliamentary monitoring site but also a tool to hold politicians to account on how they are leading on the climate emergency.

mySociety advocates for transparency by supporting Freedom of Information sites, looking at how we can uncover more information about the response of public bodies to the climate crisis. WhatDoTheyKnow is there for us to request information, in areas like pensions and investments, for example, where divestment from fossil fuels is urgently needed. They also support communities directly with online tools that improve engagement with local government and that can help build greater fairness and resilience. FixMyStreet is a keystone service of theirs and the basis for numerous new community projects.

The success stories that you share on Carbon Copy are the DNA of every local Climate Action Plan. It is evident from this local environmental and climate leadership that ‘climate citizenship’ is the way forward. This concept recognises that it will take a renaissance of citizenship and civic life for society to navigate the climate crisis safely. At the end of this decade, if we look back from a place of relative safety, we will remember millions of people who saw the present danger and didn’t look away, who connected with their civic power and used it to lead change where they live.

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