HC Deb 20 January 2003 vol 398 cc108-9W
Mr. Jim Cunningham

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she is taking to promote understanding that the actions of UK citizens have global consequences and to introduce the principles of sustainability into local communities. [90459]

Mr. Meacher

We are committed to raising awareness among UK citizens of the global consequences of their actions. For example, through our Environmental Action Fund we are assisting voluntary groups to run projects on education for sustainable development aimed at adults, schools and communities. DEFRA also directly supports a range of bodies that promote sustainable living, production and consumption. These include the Energy Saving Trust which works on energy efficiency, the Carbon Trust which supports technological innovation and encourages more efficient business working practices, and Environmental Campaigns (ENCAMS), an umbrella organisation which encompasses all the activities undertaken by the Tidy Britain Group and Going for Green. ENCAMS works with community groups, local authorities, businesses and other partners to promote sustainable development at the local level, with a particular focus on local environmental quality and anti-social behaviour

Our communications directorate are currently developing a new communications strategy on sustainable development. They will be considering all aspects of communications, including the use of the internet, media relations and paid publicity. We intend to seek stakeholder's views on proposals later in the year.

Since 2000 the Local Government Act has placed a duty on local authorities to prepare community strategies for promoting the economic, social and environmental well being of their communities and contributing to sustainable development in the UK. The Government's statutory guidance on community strategies says that community strategies should articulate how global concerns can be addressed through local action.

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