Plastic pollution commitment letters – Katie Critchlow

Many thanks for taking the time to write to me about Plastic Free Swindon and Swindon Climate Action Network.

As a long term eco activist I’m glad to be able to thoroughly support the aims of the campaign which you outline in your letter.

In my own career I have worked at Marks & Spencer HQ as Sustainable Development Manager where I helped turn the company Carbon Neutral, move to 100% sustainable wood and palm oil sourcing and to aim to send zero waste to landfill from the stores. I also introduced the 5p carrier bag charging scheme nationwide in M&S stores a full 7 years before the government caught up.

I’ve worked in Indonesia with WWF to stop the destruction of the rainforests of Borneo and I’ve also run start ups in the UK focussed on renewable energy and nature monitoring. The former, using recycled batteries from electric vehicles to create home solar energy storage.

I won a prize for my masters dissertation which looked at the behaviour of fossil fuel investors and the creation of the carbon bubble and have since then campaigned to keep fossil fuels in the ground given that we have far more fossil fuel in known reserves than we could ever safely burn. I have set up a Lib Dem Divest group and featured in the Times divesting my own pension from fossil fuels. Last year I volunteered my time with Sir Ed Davey to help craft policy ideas to tackle the 15% of global carbon emissions financed out of the City of London. I am now developing the idea of a Net Zero Business and Banking Bill which I outline here:

Not only do I thoroughly support the ideas you outline to go plastic free, I would make it a priority of mine if elected to Parliament to actively push for legislation to create a plastic free, and fossil free UK. The liberal Democrat party also have very strong policies on climate and plastics and support a nationwide fracking ban, amongst many other ambitious and well thought through policies in this area.

I believe that these policies are not only vital for my kids future and the future of our planet but also an economically savvy strategy for Swindon. 7 billion people need to live on our planet without destroying our home. If we can innovate and create more a healthy, sustainable, circular economy the UK can lead the world in delivering a system which works for people and planet. Swindon, with its proud history in rail and automotive should be at the forefront of R&D to develop and manufacture zero carbon transport.

I would be most grateful for the chance to engage further with your community on this topic to ensure that the environment and climate change get the time and thought they deserve in this election.

Kind regards and best of luck for your campaign.

Katie Critchlow.

This letter is in response to a letter that we sent to all of Swindon’s parliamentary candidates for the 2019 general election. See this post for details.