Devon's iconic Burgh Island Hotel leading local fight against climate change

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Bigbury-on-Sea in South Devon is hoping to set an example in the fight against climate change.

Earlier this week the Bigbury Net Zero group held its first so-called Island assembly, at the iconic Burgh Island Hotel.

In an area where climate is key to the local economy, locals say they are keen to set an example for other communities to follow to bring about a robust response to the climate emergency. 

The conference was governed by the tide times, as guests made their way across to Burgh Island Hotel for the event - a gathering of grass roots organisations and local business owners all keen to make a difference. 

Giles Fuchs, owner of Burgh Island Hotel, said: "We want to bring people's attention to the fact that not enough is being done currently.

“Climate change is a global issue, but often the consequences are felt most heavily on a local scale. "The Government need to step up and join all these networks because these net zero assemblies are happening all over the country but they are not yet joined up."

The assembly’s spokespeople ranged from sustainability experts to local Devonshire councillors. Credit: ITV News

Burgh Island Hotel is recognised in Devon as a leading eco-friendly hotel which is setting a precedent for the future of the industry.

With an emphasis on supporting the local area, Burgh Island sources 80% of its ingredients from within a 30-mile radius, and all staff members are trained in energy awareness to provide guests with essential information about the local environment.

In addition, from housing solar panels on the disused tennis courts to installing light pollution monitors, Burgh Island is working closely with the Carbon Trust to manage its energy needs, ensuring there is no unnecessary consumption of resources at the hotel.

Burgh Island has announced plans for a development that holds sustainability values at its core. Credit: ITV News

The Chair of Bigbury Net Zero, Farhana Yamin, has spent decades advising developing countries on climate negations.

She said: "The UN summits that I work on a lot need work from the ground upwards, every business, every home, every aspect of our lives need to change and you can't do that through high level summits and leaders flying in and making statements, it has to come from our own actions."