Low Carbon Future – Participatory Workshop #1

As part of the United Nations Sustainable Lifestyle and Education Programme, Swechha in collaboration with the Institute for Global Environmental Strategies (IGES), Japan, and implementing organisations Akatu Institute, Brazil; Chulalongkorn University, Thailand; ICLEI, South Africa; has been conducting a year long low carbon lifestyles project in India.

The project aims to collate country specific comprehensive list of behaviour changes for a low carbon lifestyles options in terms of food, housing, mobility, manufacturing goods and leisure. This project undertakes this through participatory research through citizen workshops, surveys and household experiments. It also collects data to estimate the average carbon footprint of individuals.

We recently conducted our first ‘Low Carbon Futures’ participatory workshop with a group of 39 individuals, centred around a thorough reading into the current climate crisis, in both a global and local context, as well as an understanding of impact of individual carbon footprint.This participatory workshop used various tools and online games including a pre designed questionnaire to asses and analysis participants current individual footprint, as well as an engaging virtual puzzle game in order to achieve a certain pre-set target of carbon mitigation potential by adopting various low carbon lifestyle options in the domains of housing, food, leisure, goods and mobility!

In stage 2, we will now be working closely with a select group of participants who have expressed an interest in participating in a two week long household experiment. They will be selecting few potential low carbon lifestyle options from an existing options catalogue and database designed by our team, that they can adopt and implement in their daily routine for the next two weeks. The idea through this short experiment, is to understand the exact mitigation potential (using pre established data), through adoption of these simple low carbon lifestyles in ones daily life (e.g. using a bicycle to work on few days, practising recycling of household goods, and/or usage of second hand goods or repairing damaged/broken goods etc). Each of the participants will be working on detailed day-day documentation of their respective experiences while carrying out the experiment, as well as expressing their challenges, if any during implementation.We are extremely excited to work with our participants on the upcoming household experiment, and can’t wait to share the results with you all very soon!