Thursday, 19 May 2011

Green rewards

A friend of mine, who runs an 'outdoor centre' in an isolated, fairly inhospitable and windswept moorland, encourages everyone who visits to plant a tree to offset their journey. It's a popular move - and he is growing a very useful wind break.

In our village, we are not short of trees. The poet William Wordsworth, who lived in the area until 1850, planted many exotic species, such as monkey puzzle trees. Apparently, he walked around, spreading seeds to build a cover of thorny juniper on the hillsides to compete with the sheep grazing. I am gazing across them as I write.

Tonight we have a meeting to discuss what more we can do to 'be green'. We're looking at growing more local vegetables, starting a market for local producers and underground heat generation. Each area has its own priorities and can work in ways that bring wider benefits. For us, there are also economic benefits to be gained - tourists can buy local produce and energy bills can be brought lower. We'll see what happens next!

David Jackman

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