The challenge of the climate emergency is universal. It gives us the opportunity to build comprehensive partnerships - at a community, local, national and international level.
Hello and welcome to the first of the last of Hollywood's cop 26 events. I'm sure at the end of this day, we'll all be looking for a drink. Not I advocate irresponsible use of alcohol. But my name is Mandy Rhodes. I'm the managing editor of Hollywood magazine. And I'm delighted to be chairing this morning session. The format will be discussion between us both live and virtually. And then hopefully around 20 to 30 minutes of questions from the audience. We've got roving mics, and at the end, if you put your hand up in the normal fashion, they will injure you. Feel free to tweet using the hashtag Holyrood cop 26. As I say, this is the first session of the final day of our four day Fringe Festival. And what a journey it's been. Our discussions have ranged from ensuring women at the top table, the role technology must play and change listening to the voices of young people, and demanding that decisions and decision makers are inclusive, or as inclusive and representative of the world that we live in and the one that we're trying to save. But I think at its core, our explorations over the last four days have also been an affirmation that we're all in this together, that we all have a role to play, and that it's only by working together that will ensure we get change. I think as well there's been an overlap, overwhelming desire expressed, that we must exacerbate existing inequalities are indeed create new inequalities in a race to find solutions to an immediate crisis. And we all I think are agreed that we want a fair and just transition. So how does a week country like Scotland or indeed any other small country, nation or region play its part, this can feel pretty overwhelming. And if you've been to the Maine sec, cop 26 event, you'll feel overwhelmed by its scale. Here in Scotland, we have some of the most ambitious carbon reduction targets of any nation in the world. And it's for that reason, amongst many others, that Scotland has been described as a global climate leader by the under two Coalition, which is our partner in the session. The under two coalition is an organization which brings together regional and sub state governments from across the globe to work together to amplify the expertise and experience of smaller nations and regions. And I think all of us in this room will know that being small doesn't mean that we're not experts. It brings together 260 governments all committed in one form or another to reaching net zero emissions by 2050 earlier. And it so happens that in the year of COP being held in Glasgow, Scotland is also the European co-chair of the under two coalition. And we'll hear more about that I'm sure during the session. Our other partner is Nesta, the UK is innovative an agency for social good, which has set a 10-year mission to help decarbonize the UK through social innovation. Nesta launched its mission-based strategy to 2030 earlier this year, and it contained three important missions, each one representing a social ill that has to be cured, to give every child the best start in life, to help people live healthier lives and create a sustainable future where the economy works for both people and the planet. What's not to like? So, this session is entitled Building global and local partnerships to reach net zero. And really the foundation of this whole discussion is a recognition on all sides that the challenges we face can only be overcome by adopting a partnership approach we need to work together. It requires partnerships among levels of government, regional, state, or devolved national and international and between governments and other agencies, from business to civic society to develop and build Democratic support for evidence-based policies to help us live better and more sustainably and ultimately mitigate damage to the planet. It is a pleasure to welcome all our contributors, especially those that have come from further afield. I have virtually David spears, MP Minister for the Environment and Water government of South Australia when I suspect the weather is slightly better, David. It's pouring here.
It's a it's much, much nicer here. 28 degrees today.
Well, given the topic, we're not prepared to fly over there. So as under two coalition member and to my left, I've got David eggy he gave the governor of the state of Hawaii, another under two coalition member.
Absolutely. And I do think that our weather is slightly better than on down in Australia, but I certainly would be willing to have that debate.
I believe me, we could talk about that for a full hour. I think I can't remember there's something like 150 Garlic words for rain in Scottish in Scotland. And we have Adam Lang head of Nesta in Scotland, and Madeline Gabriel, Mission Director a sustainable future at Nesta. And as I say, I do want to hear from you, too. So listen to everything that's going on, get questions written down, and we'll ask you for them later. So I guess I want to kick off first by just talking about the scale of the issues that we face, and how small countries and small voices can get their views and opinions heard. I mean, it did strike me walking around the SEC, just how impossible that could become, you know, big countries, all with big pavilions, all with big messages. So I guess, David, the first question to you would be, how does that a country like Hawaii, get your concerns out there?
Certainly. Thank you. Thank you so much. I'm really glad to be a part of this discussion. And, you know, in Hawaii, we are an island community. And I do think that one of the things when you're a resident in in the islands, you really understand first-hand how what you do impacts your neighbours and your friends across the street, you know, on an island community. It's not about getting away from people. It's really about how you live with people. And you know, we have been at this, the Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative started more than 10 years ago, we celebrated the 10th anniversary in 2015. And that's where Hawaii became the first state in the country to commit to 100%, clean, renewable energy for electricity. And, you know, oftentimes, I get asked that question about how can small communities make a difference? Well, I do believe it's a couple of things. One, we definitely got to consensus in as a community, that climate change was important. And we needed to take action, and do what we can rather than wait for somebody else to solve our problems. It really was about being self-reliant, and more sustainable. And so, you know, Hawaii in 2015, became the first full 100%. And since that time, I've had many discussions with other governors. They're now 10 states that have committed to 100%, clean, renewable since in the six years since Hawaii led the way. And I do think there's a growing realization that if we were to wait for the country, to adopt the aggressive actions needed, that we may be waiting forever. And we all know that we need immediate high impact actions now, in order to save the planet. So
one of the things that struck me about the opening speeches of cop was, it took the prime minister of Barbados, my Motley to actually really describe the human impact and the physical observations of what was happening to her Island. And can you describe to us what you actually see in Hawaii?
Well, you know, absolutely, we all hear about climate change is happening. But in on an island community, you actually live it. You know, we've had in the in Hawaii, probably five 500 year events occur in the last five years. I mean, you know, from rain bomb outburst in 2018. We had the highest rainfall 52 inches in a 24-hour period, on kawaii that was devastating for floods, it washed out highways. You know, we see coral bleaching events occur in the islands and obviously, coral bleaching means you're killing off the reef and we understand in Hawaii, how the reefs are really the foundation of our oceans, you know, the biodiversity. Being able to sustain food production comes from healthy reefs and bleached reefs are not healthy. So, we've had the worst drought on Maui, and on Oahu in a century. And we haven't had the same kind of wildfires that you see in California, but we've had the worst wildfires in the history of Hawaii, you know, within the last five years, so I think as an island community were impacted more immediately, and we definitely recognize that, that global warming is happening. And we are seeing its impacts virtually every day on the Island.
And David in South Australia, you know, I'm in Scotland, we talk a lot about, we can get the big decision makers round one table in one room and make decisions quickly. Is that something that you see as a benefit of being smaller?
Or definitely, look, I think when it comes to climate change policy, the action really is at sub national level, the ability to get our state cabinet around one table, get everyone on one page, get business leaders together to get the other tiers of government, particularly local council, I think local councils are, right, they're at the closest tier of government to communities. So their ability, particularly around adaptation, adaptation, so important in the face of a change in climate, greening our communities cooling our communities, very much the levers of change said at local government level. So we've got 1.7 million people here in South Australia, but 1.4 million live in one city, and that's the capital city of Adelaide. And so if you know, we can actually make change quite quickly. And while we've got a relatively small population, we've got responsibility for a vast landmass, the state of South Australia is five times larger than the United Kingdom. And as the Minister for Environment and Water, I put responsibility for about 20% of the landmass, immediate responsibility. So that's areas held in our protected a state or national parks, or conservation parks and the likes of our ability to drive change at sub national level can be much, much quicker. And Mandy, I should also explain to your audience, I actually grew up in southern Scotland. We recognize I'm wondering what's going on with my accent. I am Scottish, but I've lived. I lived in Scotland for 17 years, and I've lived here for 18 years. You'd be
very welcome back.
And it's interesting what you say about the council level, because a couple of days ago when we were talking about other voices being heard and influence, a member of the audience put up his hand and asked a question rarely didn't actually ask a question he made, you'll recognize the Glaswegian in him when I described the story. But he made a number of points that lasted quite a long time. He described himself as a lowly counsellor with no influence or power. And I felt that he actually didn't get away with that, because the panel said that that wasn't true that counsellors have a lot of power. But I wondered if that kind of attitude almost abdicated him responsibility and he felt that governments at the top level need to trickle down decision making.
I think there maybe is a little bit of that. I've worked very hard to my three and a half years as minister here to position local councils as, as my key partner to an extent, charities and not for profit organizations, but in terms of my hands and feet on the ground. Local government, again, is there's a huge amount of opportunity to drive change. So it's Australia as a as a jurisdiction has 68 councils so we've got quite a lot of councils, many of them with a low population, but a large geographical footprint. I know that a lot more councils than what Scotland has. But we do believe that councils can drive real change and we have resilience networks where councils come together and geographical groupings work together. We've got our coastal councils working very closely together on Coastal Resilience Project projects, we have our Outback councils, the ones in the drier desert, like parts of the state working together and share sharing knowledge and understanding our city councils come to some which are coastal some which are not come together on large scale greening projects to help cool the city. So count the role of councils and parish councils or district councils. They just should not be underestimated. There's a lot of power there a lot of influence and a lot of immediate action. We've talked about sub national influence and has sub national governments that at state or provincial level can have a difference go down another tier and sub national working with local government. There's an immense amount of influence there.
It's interesting, isn't it because partnership working is your bread and butter. her in some ways, I mean, that comment from that counsellor, it just made me a little bit because it was about pushing blame elsewhere.
Yeah. And I think we have to be quite honest that sometimes we're quite guilty of that, and in Scotland at various tiers of, you know, trying to deflect often. And I've been watching Monday the series of talks this week from yourselves and across other forums that caught and one of the things that I've come back to time and time again, is Elaine from Karen McCluskey, who's now the Chief Executive of Community Justice, Scotland, but prior to that worked in the violence reduction unit in Glasgow, leading some of the most amazing social innovation in Scotland in many years. And what she says, and I come back to this all the time, is start from where you are, and do what you can. And I think that applies across the board. And I think when we, when we think about the role of partnerships of local government, of communities of national government, we have all the tools at our disposal that we need, we know that it's in Scotland, right now, speaking specifically about Scotland, we know what we need to do. We're not saying we know exactly how to do it, but we know we've got the resources to do it. And I think sometimes we do create these barriers for ourselves about, well, I'm not going to take responsibility for that, etc, etc. And I think one of the things that's really interesting about that is our appetite for risk. Because we have to take risks, if we want to meaningfully innovate, or try new things, to try and make a difference on these existential challenges that we face. We've got to be willing to take risks along the way. And I think sometimes that culture of risk we don't have right in Scotland at the moment. And it impedes partnerships.
I mean, it's interesting, we live in one of the most it's been the most frightening time the last 18 months. And is there a tendency when you're living in a risky situation, to then avoid more risk? I mean, how do we get over that?
Yeah, it's great question, I think we have to recognize that the risk of doing nothing far exceeds the risk of trying and failing, we can't do nothing, or whether it's on climate crisis in the net zero agenda, or any of our other complex and sort of wicked social problems that we face, we can't do nothing. And we can't do more of the same we need, we need to embrace a degree of uncertainty and try new things. But I think culture is a big part of that. And we, I mean, not from a from a top down and bottom up perspective. I think that culture is something that we're talking a little bit more about now in Scotland, which I think is good. I've been thinking as well about the recent writings of the Auditor General in Scotland, Stephen Boyle, who talked about that, that lack of appetite for risk and the cultural challenges we face about embracing risk. But I think it's good that we're talking about it, I think it's good, the more forums we sit in, the more places that we raise these issues, as the enabling environment for innovation from an SEO perspective, but also just for trying, you know, it's really important that we kind of get over that can often feel quite Scottish sort of fear of putting your head above the parapet and just we've got to embrace change. And not
poppies don't either. Exactly, yeah. And mandolin, just, I mean, we're talking about governments and other organizations working together. But again, going back to my Motley and Barbados and her talking about that and getting it down to that relatable level. How do we get the average jaw or J or whatever, to think this actually matters to me and I need to do something.
And I think that's, that's really important. I think that's one of the things that's so exciting about having a discussion about sub national involvement in climate mitigation and adaptation. Because certainly at the UK level, over the last 10 or 15 years, we have made quite big strides in decarbonisation, but it's all been in things that happen behind the scenes and most people don't really notice. So we've cut emissions from electricity generation by some 40% by converting coal power fired power stations to gas fired power stations and so on, but it kind of happens without anyone really noticing. And we know that the next decade of decarbonisation is super important, but it has to has to involve people, it's going to be things that that happen in our daily lives. And as you mentioned, nesters work is about decarbonizing home. So most of the things I'll talk about are from that perspective, but, you know, we were talking about getting into in the UK 29 million houses, basically and asking people to change how they heat their homes, how they use energy at home, etc. And I think it's really sub national levels with governance, you know, regional, local, you know, hyper local, that can connect with people around that. I mean, it's, you know, certainly have to show that the, the big drive, is there a political level that everyone's playing their part, but it's really, you know, those layers of governance are more trusted, they're more close to people, they're able to show why it's important.
No one I think would accuse me of being the Pollyanna of politics or indeed the pandemic, but it does strike me that we have all very quickly adapted and changed Our lives and donors were told as well. Is there anything? I mean, I'll come to all of you on this. But David, down there in South Australia, I mean, is there anything that you can take as a silver lining from the pandemic and apply it to climate change and how we must change?
Absolutely. So, you know, I mentioned that I'm responsible for national parks and wildlife here in South Australia, a really phenomenal privilege to have this portfolio. And we have seen this surge of people into nature, people wanting to get into the great outdoors connect with nature connect with, with what the environment is. And I think I think sometimes climate change and the complexities offer it can be a little bit elitist, can be distant from the people, and the solutions can be hard and complex. I, Australia is made up of regional towns and suburbia I represent my constituency is suburbia, and very few people contact me as their local member of parliament about climate change. But they do contact me about contact me about nature, and the natural environment and wanting to look after our coasts and our beaches and our parks. And so a great silver lining. And a great problem that I've got, and I love having this problem is that I'm having to deal with more people visiting my national parks and having more people using the toilets and national parks and more people wanting to camp in my national parks. But that's getting people back to basics when it comes to conservation and environmentalism. And it is through that, that I feel that I am able to then talk about the challenges that climate face poses the natural world, the natural environment, and it just grounds the discussion a bit more than might otherwise have been the case. Because a lot of the solutions to climate policy and climate innovation set and in research and development and even big business in the market, that's a good thing in many ways. But how do we connect it back to people? Well, I think we can do that through nature, and people's desire to protect these amazing outdoor places, whether it's our parks, our beaches, our reefs, our islands.
And David, the using the experience of the pandemic, would you go? Sure, I saw you nodding along with David. But are there things that you think behaviourally that your people have learned from the pandemic you can apply?
Certainly, I, I think one of the lessons learned and, you know, I'm really proud to be governor of the state of Hawaii, because overwhelmingly, our core values, talks about community and about sacrifices, you know, in Hawaii, wearing a mask is an individual choice. But it's also an individual responsibility about how I can wear a mask and protect myself and the community from the COVID virus. During this pandemic, we've seen a couple of things. I think as takeaways, you know, the whole pace of change, generally, there's an inertia against change. But virtually every single organization and business during this pandemic had to pivot to embrace digital technology. You know, Hawaii was one of the first states to embrace telehealth and equalization between in person visits, and tele health visits. But it never really took off until this pandemic, when suddenly I was safer visiting and talking to my doctor via video conference than I would be having to get in my car, burn the fossil fuel get to that station, you know, it takes two hours to visit your doctor versus 15 minutes when you can do it via video conference. And so it really demonstrated how our community can really embrace change at a much, much more rapid pace than we normally would see. And then the other result was we saw how resilient nature is. You know, when we were all working at home in Hawaii, and no one was on the road. Suddenly the air which is always beautiful and clean, was definitely cleaner if that could happen. And we've seen restoration of our beaches, Hano Anoma Bay which is a natural area reserve and it's restricted access for most of the year with a pandemic and no visitors and no tourists at the beach. We saw a vibrancy in the restoration of coral and restoration of biota in in the bay accelerate so quickly. So it just really does demonstrate that our planet will respond if we give it the opportunity to and we know that our communities can be respond when you have to
actually adjust togetherness? No, because it says, How are you there? I think everybody related to that we suddenly started hearing birds singing in a way that we hadn't before. But how do you then relate that story into? Let's keep going with change? I mean, it's, I was thinking about your 20 Minute neighbourhoods as well.
Yeah, absolutely. So I think what we've seen is what happens or what can happen when you treat a crisis, like a crisis. Because, you know, we've seen it here in Scotland, and everybody's responded differently. But here in Scotland, we had the government standing up every day during a televised press conference with statistics and numbers, and the latest insight and the latest science, your broadcast into people's homes. We saw the consistent public messaging, you know, another sort of differing views on that, but we saw that happen from a top from a top down level. And that filtered down and from communities as well, people started to be much more aware of their responsibility as the governor alludes to, in terms of to our fellow citizens, to our neighbours, to our communities. And I think that's there is to Norway undermine the tragedy of the last two years in extreme difficulties, there has been enormous Silver Linings for one of a better term that I think gives me real hope and inspiration. And part of that is what we've tried to capture in the this must be the police resource, which we've got displayed in the outside of this venue. Today, is that idea of what could we do? If we said, this must be the place? No, where we treat our climate emergency as an actual emergency? I mean, what would it be like if we had a minister standing up every day telling us the latest science on climate change, attributing deaths to climate change, which we know we can do, attributing the actual human implications and what we must do as citizens and individuals. So I think there's a really important lesson there that I hope as we emerge, hopefully, from this pandemic, and start to grapple with the big existential problem of climate crisis, that we can take some of the lessons we've learned about what people are willing to do, when they understand the role that they have in that societal change.
David, I'm just picking up on that point from Adam, David in South Wales rather than the one. Communication has been the thing that our first minister in Scotland has been really applauded about, in terms of messaging around the pandemic, and what Adams describing there, if we could apply exactly the same kind of communication skills to maybe we would get somewhere faster. Is that something that you recognize?
I think that's definitely the case. I'm not sure necessarily daily press conferences, I think we're all a bit over those. But actually, being better at communicating and telling, telling the story of the good, the bad, the ugly, the self-identifying or finding, developing the Silver Linings along the way and actually bringing people along on that journey. I think, again, I come back to my point, I'm repeating myself a little bit, but the point that this policy area can be a little bit of latest it can be, it can be highly academic, people can find it way above their heads, and the problem is too great to be able to grapple with. But if you can look at the local level, the household level, the neighbourhood level, and you can bring it into to have climate change will negatively impact Yes, but equally, explain and identify ways that that can be positive changes, individuals can and families and neighbourhoods can come together to tackle change and, and make change together. I really think that's where we need to be we need to be able to communicate and engage at that level, tell those stories and bring people along on the journey. I'm not saying we do it badly. I don't think we do. But I think we could do it better.
I mean, it's interesting here in Britain, you know, we I think the messaging that has come down from very high level scientific language that people just turned off to a 94 year old journalist and David Attenborough and a teenager and Greta Thornburg have managed to bring everybody into the into the whole interest community, I suppose. I mean, from your point of view in Hawaii, where do you think people have really taken the messaging from?
Well, I do think that one of the core values, I think that all of us, you know, Hawaii is a very unique place, there is no majority, right? We're all minorities. And there has been wave after wave of immigration into the islands that makes the community that we see and I think that we all learned very early on that what we do impacts others. And it's very important that, that on in an issue like climate change and the pandemic, you know, we can only be successful as a community, we can only be successful if we each do our part to contribute to the broader community in order to achieve success. And I think that that is something that is, is very important. You know, I Hawaii is the only state with a state-wide education system. And I do believe it starts with the children and about children learning about resilience and, and global warming, as children, and they are often motivated to take action. I was speaking at one of our elementary schools, and they were they had this big project not so much on climate change about the elimination of single use plastic, I think that that week has gone across the country. And speaking at the school, the children asked me, Governor, we want to ban single use plastic in the school, why won't you let us do it? Right. So it's one of those I told them? Well, you know, the reality is, when I was a student, in this school, we recycled plates and forks and everything, every single day, there was no such thing as this throw away kind of society where you use the plate one, so you use the fork once and threw it away. So we never had single use plastic when I was a student. And certainly, that started the school going into what can they do to take action, not wait for me as governor, to order it across the state. But what can they do to stop using the single use plates and forks and things that they use every single day, and, and get to a more sustainable solution. So I do think it's about ensuring that our young people are engaged in the conversation, they have a bigger stake than I do. And I think they get it much quicker. And they definitely are focused on what actions they can take that will make a difference in our community.
And I want to come back to the risk idea, because I think, again, you know, we talked about the dangers of retreating into things that you know, when you're in a risky situation, how do we get people to think outside the box?
Yeah, that's a really interesting question. I think going back to some of the things people were talking about in relation to that pandemic, and what's that shown is possible. I think this is related. Because I think one thing that gets in the way of change in this area is almost not being able to imagine life being any different, right? So you think that the way things are is the way they've always been and the way they always will be? And it's actually quite hard to take yourself out of that. And the pandemic has shown very clearly that we can very quickly change social practices. And it's also focused us on what's happening in other places in a way that I think is helpful and kind of every country's compared itself, I think, with the approaches that others have taken. And I think that can open up new ways of doing things. So in in the area, again, where we're looking at in terms of households, you know, UK, we've got quite a specific context, we have a lot of people who heat their homes using gas, I'm actually quite new to this area. And I kind of just assumed that we'd always been doing that and everyone else in the world does it. And of course, they don't I mean, actually, the challenge is very different in most other parts of the world. It's about cooling rather than heating for a start. But the way that, you know, the different mix of technologies, you know, are kind of different in every country. And I think just being able to see that actually opens up some room for creativity can say actually, it doesn't have to be this way, we can do things a bit differently. And that opens up some space for taking risks.
I guess it's same question to you, Adam. It's about also bringing people in. I mean, Nesta has always brought people together around the table, and what lessons can you impart to others about doing that?
I don't know. Because that implies that. I think we're as good as we could be. And I think we can always be better. But I think one of the things that I think we are really passionate about and I think is really important, is the idea of inclusive innovation. Because I think as many speakers today and yourself Mandy have mentioned, one of the things that is true just know is that we exist in a world with inequalities that are or should be intolerable and unacceptable. I think the pandemic has highlighted those and exacerbated elements of those inequalities. And I think there's a real concern about the transition to net zero which we know we have to move fast, no, on. And doing that in a way that isn't inclusive or doesn't bring people along is a real risk. We've got to have this. You embrace this opportunity. We have During the just transition, but it's going to be hard, it's going to be difficult to do that in a socially inclusive way. And I think that when we think about how we best we bring people in and how best particularly in the context of the under to members, there is a really important role for government, whether it's national or local, I think often about the work of the RSA in this space where they did a series on Bridges to the Future, where they talked about the role of government as first follower. And I think this maybe relates a little bit to the point that governor was making, and that we all often default to, we need government to mandate that we need government to set the agenda first. Whereas an and slightly, governments are at times to blame for that, because they create that all governments create that, that that vibe. But I think what's really important is the changing that dynamic where governments create an enabling environment, and are then able to get in behind and follow the evidence, follow the good ideas, follow the things that they know, can work and can scale. So it's not easy. I recognize that it's easy for someone like me to say that, but it's a much, much harder thing to operationalize. But I think that is a really important part of the culture change we need if we want to get to where we need to be on this.
And actually on that, both, both David's I mean, Scotland's making a very tangible contribution on what Adams just described within the under two coalition by leading on the Net Zero Futures Program and bringing expertise together and sharing it. I mean, one of the things that I wanted to ask you both is, you are also different. You've all got different problems. Some of you have problems, because you're too hot, some have problems because you're too cold. How do you share experience when you're also different?
Well, I do think in the end, you know, Hawaii has been an active participant in the under two coalition. And I do think it's about recognizing that even though every community is different, that there are solutions that work better in one place, rather than another. But being a coalition of many partners, in many different kinds of environments, allows you to see success and what success happens elsewhere. And most importantly, I think the collaboration, the opportunity to talk to other communities that have implemented some of these solutions, is very helpful. You know, when Hawaii embraced the 100%, clean, renewable energy for 2015. Other governors thought I was crazy, you know, I mean, as you said, you know, in 2015, there was no simple solution for Hawaii. You know, everybody kept telling me as governor, are you guys expecting a paradise tax, and we're just going to move to higher cost energy solutions might be cleaner, but then you pay for it? Well, Technology and Innovation solve that problem? Right, the cost of solar panels plummeted by tenfold. Same thing with solar about batteries. So today, a solar project is more cost efficient than the avoided costs of burning fossil fuel. Right? And did we know that that would happen? Well, I'm an engineer, I anticipated that that might happen. But at the time that we actually had to vote on it, it was really, you know, a hope and a wish, rather than a reality. And so I do think that being part of these coalition's allow us to share our stories, so that you can identify opportunities that may apply. And I think most importantly, you can talk to somebody who's actually done it, right. So it's not it's not just theoretical anymore. It's actually a community that found a solution that can be adapted to Hawaii and I do think that that's the power of coalition's and that's the power of collaboration.
Is that how you see it as well, David gives you that, if you like, the strength and courage of being part of a larger grouping.
Definitely, you know, when you're at sub national level, sometimes she gave feel like, what's your role in the, the, the bigger picture and Australia you know, 25 million people in this nation 6% or so of those live in South Australia. So we are a small country, very large, geographically, small country, in terms of population, and then we are a small state 6% of small country. It does make you think, gee, is there any point? Well, of course, there's a point there's a point to adapt to build resilience into our state, so that we maintain our very high quality of living were one of the most liveable cities in the world. That's my plug to your audience to come and check. But, and I've experienced Scotland and here and the weather's better here, but Quite simply at the ad, we are a small place, but we can show leadership. And we, I believe that's what we're doing here, you know, we've got a massive, massive transition to renewable energy here by 2030, we'll have 100% of our energy from renewables, maybe even a little bit before some days, mild days and spring and autumn here we are producing 100% of our power from solar and, and wind. So we've got we've got a good story to tell here. But we've got to weave that story together with other jurors, jurisdictions, and particularly sub nationals work together share our stories in on two, September 2016, we had a state-wide blackout. And that was because we gone out on a limb with renewables, and, and created a real vulnerability in our electricity grid, a storm went through, we went black that cost our economy $300 million in one afternoon. And it was embarrassing. But I own that I wasn't the minister at the time, my priority wasn't in government. But we own that. And we say, to other places, particularly sub nationals who are a little bit more vulnerable to these sort of problems, learn from us get alongside us, we're in a really good place now. But we weren't always that way. We were pioneers. We were innovators. But we did fall in a hole in September 2016. So learn from us, there's plenty of good things to learn. But we've also got to learn from the challenges as well. And I think sub nationals that at smaller level might feel a little bit lonely. Look at Hawaii, they're out there in the Pacific all by itself separated from it from its national country in many ways, probably a little bit more culturally, like Australia, in my view is someone has been to Hawaii three times. But look, I think as sub nationals, we can come together and do really good things.
Yeah. I mean, before we go to the audience, Adam, I just wanted to I mean, one of the things that over the last few days walking around cop, again, is this danger of being expressed that big countries, were listening to you smaller countries, but we're still going to impose solutions on you. That must be an anathema to the likes of Nesta.
Yeah, I mean, I think it goes back to that point about, well, from the Nesta perspective about the challenges of inclusive innovation. I don't think from all the work that we've done in communities across the UK, and indeed working globally, with partners around the world. In some cases. Innovation works best when it's inclusive, when it's open, when we can learn from the mistakes as we go. I mean, that's a that's a core part of the innovation process is being open, transparent, learning quickly from failure, adapting iterating, etc. And I think that that does at times stand a little bit juxtaposed with some of the kind of the centralizing in the top down narrative, because we know that for innovation to be effective and scalable, it needs to be top down and bottom up, and that needs to work in harmony. However, that said, I think there is a really important role for local governments, national governments to create that enabling environment point if we can set the legislation, you know, I know legislation is not the be all and end all far from it. But it is a really important part of the puzzle. So we need the right legislation, we need the right enabling environment for action to be taken and learn from and scaled. And we need the right targets to be informing targets are I know that politically divisive and often open to debate, but they are a really important part of the mix of setting the institutions of a nation or a place in the right direction or aiming at the right things. So I think it's, it's a tricky dynamic, and I'm not part of it, thankfully, you know, but, but I can fully appreciate it's a very difficult dynamic, but it's one we're going to keep trying and keep sort of iterating
Madeline, given your view on the other women on the stage, and Adam kind of set me up there on inclusiveness, that's been another theme over the last few days for us at our events, that it's so important that a we have diverse voices at the table. But very importantly, women need to be at the top table to I mean, it's not something that I couldn't reel off the statistics right now. But people were talking about the lack of women in particular, the renewable sector, in finance, almost every level, it's just a replication of hire women, not an equal numbers. Is that something that concerns you? Well,
it does. I do think I do think it's changing and I think I mean, I've actually quite recently come into this space I'm My background is in innovation studies and innovation management and sustainability is new for me. And it's been quite interesting to see actually how things are changing and how there are quite a lot of networks for example, for women in in in energy for women in renewables generally, and also in other sectors as well. So I can you know, I've got a bit of a laser focus on radon on households and heating and so on, but I'm starting to engage with networks of people who actually go into people's homes and fix their heating systems and, and that's very, very male dominated. As you might imagine, but there are female lead companies emerging people, people connecting with each other, there's sure if I should say this, but there's a networker kind of network of female heating engineers called stopcocks, which I just think is fantastic. Annual Conference. So we I think we are seeing things changing. And I think on the inclusiveness point, I mean, it's clearly not just about gender, although that's very important. And we often talk about other aspects of inclusion around race and ethnicity, and, and social background and class and so on. But I think it's also the point I want to make is just actually, almost, we need to think about roles as well, I suppose in terms of inclusion. So again, in there kind of transitioning to cleaner homes. You know, we need to think about householders, of course, they're our number one focus. But we also need to think about all the people who are communicating with those people. So whether they are installers who are going into people's homes, or in state agents who are selling homes to people, or people are selling other things that will be in your house, like a kitchen or whatever, actually, everyone needs to be on board. And I suppose just bringing it back to some of the bigger themes. And I do think the type of top level government commitments that we're seeing being made at this conference, which hopefully will be strong enough are really important in persuading people that we're all in this together, and they do set the direction. But implementation is the number one thing that needs to happen over the next 10 years or so while watching the next 2029 years to 2050. And that can only really be done at local level.
I mean, David, I understand in Hawaii, you might actually be in the minority in terms of women being at the top table.
Yes, absolutely. I'm, I'm proud that in a way of 52% of climate change leadership are women. And more than 70% of those involved are minority. So you know, I think it can happen and it has happened in Hawaii. And, you know, it's just another example that as long as it's top of mind and something that you are aware of promoted, promoted, that it can happen.
Well done. No, any questions from the audience?
Hi, my name is Dan, I work for Walmart, Scotland, which is the Scottish Government's dollars in the Scottish Government's national fuel poverty scheme that helps people who struggled to heat their home and helps homes lower carbon emissions. And just to give a plug to the magazine, you can read more about us and the magazine this site. Just to extend from the point from the minister and Adam earlier on participating in climate change initiatives, as often seen as the privilege of the wealth issue in the middle class, who can who can put a spin on climate change initiatives and environmentalism shake off that image?
I I'm happy to start. I mean, I do think that it's really about government being focused on being inclusive and including everyone. So you know, in Hawaii, we did establish the 100%, clean, renewable, but we did know that those first early adopters would be the affluence. So what kinds of programs can we create that would allow everyone to participate? So in Hawaii, we created the on bill financing so that anyone regardless, anyone who had an electric bill, would be able to participate with no credit, we created the green energy marketing security Securities Act so that we could finance on been well financing. So those who couldn't, we also created something called the Community Based utility projects where we could finance a community base utility scale project that community members would be able to participate in. So for those who didn't have the rooftop, to be able to participate, they would be able to do it through this community based solar program. So we were clear that if you just let the economic strife something that you would get a solution that benefited the affluent. But if you stay focused on ensuring that you want equity and full access, you can develop programs that will allow the entire communities to participate.
I think that same data model, and really, that's the big issue in Scotland, I mean, we have a housing stock that really is not prepared for what we're all facing. But also it does feel a bit like a rich land scheme and electric cars, etc. I mean, how do we, how do we bridge that gap and make people see that it's an affordable thing and unnecessary thing?
Woke off. So you're absolutely right. I mean, just one example of your point on Monday. 70% I believe roughly, of housing stock in the city is tenements, or 70% of the population live in tenements rather, and they are some of the least well suited to energy efficiency or decarbonize home heating technologies. So and that's a big problem. That's just one example of many. And I think, for me, a lot of this goes back to some of the points that were made by all panellists earlier, around the challenges of policy design, and communication. Because actually, I mean, I think what we're likely to see today, again, in the city is an enormous March of protest, which I assume and hope will represent all aspects of citizens in this country and from beyond. So I think it's not that the issue itself is not one that people across the spectrum care about, I think they do. But I think part of the problem is they often feel excluded from the process of solutions, they feel. And we know that from nurses working in 2019, before the pandemic, we surveyed people in Scotland on their attitudes to innovation, and this before the pandemic and before cop, they highlighted that action on public health and action on climate change. The root causes of climate change were the two number with their two top priorities for Social Innovation. But people in Scotland told us they felt excluded. They felt innovation was something that happened elsewhere, it wasn't for them. And I think that's a really important thing for all of us, in this space, not least ourselves at Nesta, to think about when we think about how we engage people, when we think about how we're trying to influence policy design and legislation, as well as action and communities and the initiatives we're hoping to take forward in our new strategy. Because if they're not inclusive, we're setting them up for a field and they're not going to scale and are not going to be adopted. And to some of the points of modelling was mentioning earlier, this next 10 years, we need to be scaling and adopting at a pace we've not really ever done anything like that before. So for not doing it in an inclusive way, we really are going to come a cropper on that one down the line.
And the problem is, people are talking about things like heat pumps, and just things that feel so unaffordable to most people.
Yeah, a couple of points on that, I think there is a lot around communication. And so one point I'd make is that I think we can tell a story around the adoption of new technologies, where actually those who have a bit more income can take on a bit more risks themselves, and they're proving it, they're bringing the cost down for others. So almost, you know, kind of have a responsibility to go first if you if you if you can afford to. But we also should remind people as with some of the other technologies that for example, the governor mentioned, those those costs do drop over time. And actually, that's the really the focus, I suppose, of what those who are innovating those in business and governments are trying to do over time. But I think the other point I'd like to just raise is that, as you mentioned, heat pumps, one of my favourite topics that actually, particularly in this country anyway. Because we have about 20% of our housing stock is is socially social, socially rented. And that's, that's been the biggest focus of all are sort of 10 year sectors on decarbonizing those homes. And so actually some of our early adopters are, are amongst our lower income communities who live in some of those homes. And we often don't think of them as early adopters, because we think of those people as being you know, having a lot of extra cash being really environmentally motivated buying all the new tech. But if we can make the experience of people who are in, say, social housing, who have, you know, works done to retrofit their homes to have insulation put into heat pumps put in, if you can make that experience really good, then you are really clearly showing that this is not a transition just for the rich, but for everyone. And I think quite often we don't really put quite enough focus on the user experience. I think actually organizations like warm works really do. But it's really putting that at the centre and sort of saying how can we make people's lives better just not thinking about this as a program of rolling out new technology, but a program of how do we leave people actually better off? How do we design around people? And just to give some very specific examples, I mean, a lot of the new technologies that come onto the market like smart home tech is designed in that way. It's like sold to people that your life will be better it'll be smoother the you'll be able to control your heating from a smartphone, all of those types of things. But it's designed with people with quite a lot spare cash in mind, who designed those technologies with for those who are more income strapped and living in smaller homes, for example, we would, I think, have much better outcomes.
I mean, David, on the other side of the world, and you've experienced living here, too, are these common themes. I mean, just try the rich, having more of a stake in this if you like.
Full I think that probably is the case, unfortunately, and certainly as the Minister responsible, that's something I tried to reverse all the time. I'm a cabinet minister. First and foremost, I'm a constituency MP and my constituency is very much middle Australia. Working suburbia and my task is to I've got this test does it Can I make my work around climate change policy relate to the people that I represent and at a parliamentary level, and that that really keeps me grounded when I think about this sort of stuff, because we know that electric vehicles are very expensive. We know that some of the changes that we are hoping for in terms of how we, we build houses in the future and home batteries, we've got really good penetration of home batteries here, but they're expensive. And you can wipe out your, your wealthier people are not paying anything for their electricity here in South Australia now, because they've got a combination of solar panels and batteries. But what about the rent the renters who are left behind landlords, for, for various, quite sensible financial reasons aren't putting solar panels and batteries into rental units and apartments and flats. So there is a, there is a real challenge there to bring this down to day to day level. One area that is really important to save Australian might not be quite as significant in the northern hemisphere is adaptation. So I talk a lot of adaptation, one thing to be playing a leadership role and driving reduction in emissions, and we're doing that, but we've got to adapt, we've got to build resilience into our communities so that people can deal with more days, about 40 degrees. And I know, that's unimaginable, utterly unimaginable to some people in Scotland. But I've experienced that they're 46.5 degrees here in our capital city a couple of years ago. And so we do need to. So I talk a lot about adaptation. And I feel that is a little bit easier to explain to people and get everyone on board with planting trees and in their, in their gardens in their in nature strip in front of their house, building the resilience and quality of local parks and greening our neighbourhoods and things like that. So adaptation is I think, a little easier to communicate, and helps bring people along in that journey.
Thanks, dude. Are there any more questions? Sorry?
Thank you, this is such an August audience. It's a very wise one. So I wanted to actually ask a question and observation, as a very wise person I know said some a problem that's been in the making with almost 8 billion people in our world is going to take every bit of those 8 billion people suffer a lot of the references that have occurred here, the interconnectedness between them. And that virtuous cycle, you know, of creating a culture where everybody can truly feel included, so that they can bring their best to the table volunteer that apart from having it done to them right, in the tenements, and in the lower income, but they to have innovations that they are doing in their own small ways that that can inspire their own children, their grandparents, that their neighbourhoods and the neighbours. And that brings me to the thing I was looking very closely at with great interest at the under to coalition website. And I was looking for that word human. And I didn't quite find it. So I wanted to push the boundaries here a little bit. I have a company called Keys to human. And my life's work is dedicated to ensuring and understanding what makes us most human. And how can we intentionally, very much intentionally carry that forward into an increasingly digitized and highly automated world, which does not leave much space. And this resilient human, you know, somebody calls resilience, like a stretch, and it's not possible to always operate at the stretch. And so my question to this group, and to under two Coalition, which is almost flat, hierarchical, right, a second level, sub national group is how are you in your three elements, pathways, policies and transparency, creating a measurements and then implementing that actionable space where the policy does filter down? Because I've been part of many policymaking groups myself, and it becomes such a joy to have finished a very kind of humungous policy that after that, all the energy is just taken over there. But unless you have those measurements, and the next steps can really talk through much ahead I'll put that question
I think, I think I know what the question is. How do you how do you keep things human? How do you? I mean, I think, David, in some respects, you answered that, because you said that you always think about your constituents. But David, how do you relate everything back to the human beings?
Well, I do think and, you know, in Hawaii, we talk about the law of spirit a lot, you know, it's a gift from the indigenous people, the people, the First Nations, Hawaiian, to all of us as immigrants who have come about being proud of where you came from, and who you are, and being willing to share that with others. And I do say, in Hawaii, you know, the human connection in our communities are very strong. And that was one of the real big culture shocks in this pandemic, when we suddenly had to shut down and work from home. Instead of interacting in, in in a lot of different ways. We were all willing to do that, because we understood about commitment to community. But I think it also made us realize that there really is no substitution for face to face interactions amongst people, that you can supplement with virtual meetings and virtual conferences. But it really helps accelerate interactions and progress, to have human to human connections. And I think that we can take the best of the pandemic, and revert back to the best of the human interaction in order to accelerate action so we can save our planet.
Right? I've got a message that says it's okay to run over for a few minutes. So we'll run over by a few minutes. I mean, we have a phrase and Scotland call. We're all jock Thompson's barons, which means we are all the same. We are all in this together, and hopefully all human think there was another question.
Yes, sorry. I'm the ambassador for the virtual audience. So there's the equation from online? How do we best capture and continue to share these ideas after cop? Once everyone has left Glasgow, and they can go back to their own communities and back to their own domestic political agendas?
That's a good question. David in South Wales, given you're not here, I mean, I'm, I'm sure you're invested in whatever happens here. Do you hope that people go back with lessons learned?
I've got a reasonable level of confidence that people will, you know, structures like the under to correlation, which brings together sub nationals have been absolutely fundamental and information sharing and policy, joint policy development. During my three and a half years as Minister we've been involved from before our government changed here inside Australia with the undertook coalition playing a big role there, I think there's a huge amount of opportunity to keep the club together, so to speak, to keep the gang together, we have to it's beholden that we do that we keep talking, we keep sharing ideas. I of course, events like cop come with a certain amount of excitement and momentum and even hyperbole, have driven along by the media and, and the like, but that's okay. You need that, to stimulate discussion and ideas. And now our job is to get back to our jurisdictions and implement our ideas make things happen.
And for you, David, what do you hope you'll take away from here?
Yes, I was and I do think it's about the coalition's and the collaboration, right. I mean, there was a lot of work ahead of cop to get ready. And we all challenge each other as sub nationals. Or, as my friend Governor Inslee, Jay Inslee, from Washington State likes to say supranational because the Nationals won't do it. So it's the supranational states that will be taking action. But you know, it is very powerful to hear and understand what other people are doing, to learn and know that you're not alone in this fight against climate change that others of like mine have taken, high impact actions all around the world, and that more that we can reach out and hold hands prior to and after. I think the more we can accelerate the actions as necessary to save the planet
model and what do you hope from COP?
I do think there's a risk that we go away from COP and the kind of public attention that's been focused on climate change and tackling it kind of wanes off and we sort of forget about it. I think there's a responsibility for organizations like Nesta, but maybe also for Hollywood magazine or the media more generally, to keep up the pressure. So keeping a focus on actually what change has been made and what needs to still happen and keeping the public conversation going.
And as I'm just to make it more than just for two opportunities for global leaders, what do you hope?
I mean, much like others have said, I hope that this is genuinely looked upon as a point in time in which things really started to ramp up. I'm not naive, I, you know, cops is just a moment in time, hopefully a very significant and important one. But it's got to be about the starting gun for really accelerating that that speed and scale. But just to briefly on the online person's question, I left Glasgow in 2007. And I still think it might be the biggest mistake I've made as an adult. So I don't think anyone should leave Glasgow, I think we should all stay here until we figure it all out and get it done.
Well, I think we've all discovered that size does matter, but perhaps not in the way people used to talk about. And we've run over time, I must bring the session to a close. It's been fascinating. And I've learned so much over the last few days, probably still got more to learn again this afternoon. On behalf of both Hollywood magazine and Hollywood events, the whole team, thank you very, very much for coming. We will be sending out an online evaluation form. Your feedback is really important to us about how we shape events going forward. So please send that back to us. And you'll then in return, receive a link to the session so that you can review it as well. Thank you very much
We need state and regional governments to set net zero targets and follow through with action. To succeed will mean mobilising and connecting people, communities, organisations and governments to experiment and innovate, and to design and test the radical policies that are needed to help us live better, as well as sustainably.
Through the Net Zero Futures project, in partnership with the Scottish Government and Bloomberg Philanthropies, the Under2 Coalition is connecting its members with existing net zero targets with states and regions interested in increasing their ambition.
The Nesta in Scotland team partnered with the Under2 Coalition, a global community of state and regional governments, at the Holyrood COP26 Fringe Festival, for a discussion on the importance of building comprehensive partnerships to take innovative action on the road to net zero. We also be showcased our This Must Be the Place exhibition, a shared vision of Scotland’s sustainable future.