This weekend, over 100 people will travel to Birmingham for the first meeting of the UK’s citizen assembly on climate change.
A citizens assembly is a group of people who are brought together to learn about and discuss a set of issues, they then reach conclusions about what they think should happen.
Members were randomly selected through a process called sortition. 30,000 invitations were sent out and more than 1,500 people confirmed availability, then a highly representative sample of the UK population, based on region, age group, gender, ethnicity, education and concerns about climate change were confirmed.
Various speakers will give talks to the assembly before the discussions, the speakers include professor Rebecca Willis, University of Lancaster, professor Joanna Haigh, Imperial College London and Chris Stark from the Committee on Climate Change.
The hope is that this process will give parliament a greater understanding of what people across the UK really think about climate change and will also outline how the UK can reach net-zero by 2050.
Assembly member, Marc, 46, Newcastle, said: ‘It’s amazing to get the chance to have a say and influence what may happen in the future.
‘I was in the army for 22 years so I’ve got no problem with meeting new people and learning new things.
‘I hope that Britain can take a leading role in making the changes we need to secure our future.’
Speaker of the House of Commons, Sir Lindsay Hoyle, said: ‘Concern about climate change is as high as ever, and it’s clear we all need to play our part to achieve the net-zero emissions target that was passed into UK law by parliament last year.
‘That is why I welcome the work of the Climate Assembly, it’s a great example of parliamentarians engaging with the public to help influence their work and proposals for action.’
Earlier this year, Environment Journal reported on the inital announcement of the Climate Assembly.
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