It’s difficult to recapture that oppressive atmosphere of the early 1980s – Thatcher, Reagan, US missiles in UK, the threat of nuclear winter, Greenham Common, support of unsavoury regimes… A time when things did not make sense. Environment and recycling didn’t get much of a lookin.
Then we took the children to visit the Centre for Alternative Technology in a reclaimed quarry near Machynlleth in North Wales. What a refreshing experience! Here sustainability was king – alternative energy sources, solar panels, windmills, recycling, composting , growing vegetables, conserving energy, explaining nuclear dangers… I still recall the relief that someone was taking these things seriously and doing real practical stuff. I’ve supported CAT and its development ever since.
Research and education have always been key themes for CAT. Leading light Peter Harper gave an inspirational talk as part of our series of New RenaissanceLectures in Knutsford in the early 1990s. I’ve added used cardboard to the compost heap ever since!
It was a pleasure to recently receive Issue 100 of their magazine Clean Slate, still going strong, with news of the latest developments at CAT. In case you’re not aware, CAT is leader of the Zero Carbon Britain initiative, a source of inspiration to many across the world.
Congratulations to all involved with CAT, and may you continue to inspire us for many years to come. The need for your work is as great as ever.
Incidentally, the centre an excellent place to visit – friendly staff, good displays well explained, water-powered funicular, ‘green’ café, child-friendly, nature walks,…
Featured image of CAT funicular courtesy of Dr Neil Clifton , via Wikimedia Commons