Premier Helen Zille is making a call for residents of the Western Cape to share their ideas for making the province greener, as well as to make an active commitment to play their part in striving for sustainability that can make the region a Green Economy Hub.
Following the release of the Census 2011 data, which showed that the Western Cape’s population has increased by 29% since 1996, Premier Zille said that this population growth should trigger the government, business, civil society, communities and individual citizens to redouble their efforts to “go green” by striving for resource efficiency and integrating sustainability practices into everyday living.
“The growing strain on our limited resources and increasing energy demand from a growing population mean that we simply cannot carry on in the unsustainable way we have been doing for many years. Our society needs to start moving from a lifestyle of conspicuous consumption to one of essential consumption. We all need to recycle more, we need to use more public and non-motorised transport and we need to stop water waste that happens through tap and pipe leaks. We can all take small steps to ensure greater sustainability and to move to a low-carbon, resource-efficient economy: from using energy-efficient light bulbs and switching off lights in rooms we aren’t using to installing water meters and walking or cycling for short trips within our neighbourhoods instead of driving,” she said.
Premier Zille recently completed the 110% green better together cycle tour through the Overberg and Cape Winelands which partly promoted cycling as a mode of zero-carbon emission “green transport” that also contributes to an active, healthy lifestyle. 110% Green is a catalytic initiative of the Western Cape Government, launched this year on 5 June (World Environment Day), to promote the green economy by identifying and showcasing companies and organisations that have started to go green in order to encourage ideas-sharing and action for sustainability and harnessing renewable energy sources.
In the spirit of promoting active citizenship and in line with the Western Cape Government’s “Better Together” approach, Premier Zille is calling on Western Cape residents to tweet her, using the hashtag, to share:
1. Their ideas for the Western Cape to go green and move more rapidly to achieve a sustainable future
2. What they have done so far in their businesses and homes to go green?
3. What commitment they will make going forward to go green or live more sustainably?
These inputs will be collated and integrated into the Western Cape Government’s green economy strategy.
In addition, Premier Zille is encouraging everyone to visit and like the 110% green Facebook fanpage and help to build a critical mass of active citizens who make the shift to “go green”. On the Facebook fanpage, people can post what commitment they are making and report back on progress. The slogan of the 110% Green campaign is “Commit. Act. Impact.” with the message that everyone must make 100% commitment to go green. This will be needed to achieve 10% impact.
Premier Zille concludes, “The need for sustainability is a challenge that we are facing up to and turning it into an opportunity. We cannot wait. We must get going with practical action and with everyone taking shared responsibility to build our green economy in the Western Cape and ensure a sustainable future.”