We had our first citizens’ assembly on sustainability in the Ogwen Valley in summer. And then nothing happened for a while. And then we would have the second and third iteration in quite close succession! They announced the date of the third at the end of the second, but I forgot to put it in my diary. And then when the reminder email game, I realised I had already registered for that Conwy Half Marathon. Oh dear! But I suppose I could still attend most of the day.
After the race I didn't linger; I went straight home and quickly got ready. I walked into Neuadd Ogwen, and saw people were discussing at the tables. I just joined one that didn't seem to have too many people there. They were discussing energy. That sounded interesting! The obvious ideas had already been offered; solar panels, wind turbines, hydro. I added the only gonna get worse to it. I felt I had made a contribution! There were other tables where the topics were: nature, leisure, transport, housing, and maybe more. And we presented our ideas to the entire floor.
While discussing, I quickly ate a few sandwiches I had brought. I was ravenous after having just run 21 km! And I figured that lunch had already been. I was wrong, though; lunch was served after we had discussed for a bit. I totally had space for a bit more food!
During lunch I asked what I had missed. And that mainly had been a delegation from the local schools, who had had their own assembly. And after lunch we tried to think about how you would practically go about realising all the ideas we had been discussing before.
My table decided to go for some sort of playground where the equipment generates electricity when they are being played with. We figured that might be away to generate electricity that doesn't have too many disadvantages! Wind turbines seem to be out, as you don't seem to be allowed to build any that you can see from Eryri National Park, which pretty much excludes the entire valley. We were worried about solar panels because they require all sorts of where are elements of which were not sure if they are being mined in anything like a responsible way. And hydro may be detrimental to river ecology. So maybe children might be the least bad option! Although it is difficult to imagine they would generate an awful lot. But I didn't really feel the idea and I went to another table.
I found the transport table. We were thinking about how to encourage sustainable travel! I got stuck there.
When that was done, the day came to an end! I must admit I was flagging a bit. All the practical ideas were laid out in the foyer; we were all invited to end our names to projects that particularly spoke to us, and we might be willing to help develop further. I think I added mine to 3 of them.
I then went home. Let's hope we will actually develop all these ideas! There will be a follow-up. Something will happen in February. Maybe that will be the stage where we start tackling all the ideas we have gathered so far! Stay tuned!