Josiah Lockhart has taken over as Chief Executive of leading environmental charity Changeworks. In this article, he sets out the role Changeworks will play in accelerating the just transition to a low carbon society, and the growth Changeworks is undergoing to get there.
Joining Changeworks, which has 35 years of experience in delivering low carbon living and energy efficiency, as Chief Executive is a great honour. I look forward to delivering our organisational strategy to accelerate the decarbonisation of Scotland’s homes to help fight the climate emergency.
Changeworks has always been at the forefront of moving Scotland towards a low carbon future. We work with government, local authorities, community groups, housing associations, private householders and others to deliver high impact solutions to tackle the climate crisis. Last year we removed 245,500 tonnes of carbon and installed over 4,000 energy efficiency and renewable technology measures.
Changeworks is at a pivotal moment. We are focusing on where we can make the biggest difference, and are growing our organisation, as well as expanding reach and scaling up services.
Earlier this year, Changeworks launched its strategy for 22-25 which focuses on decarbonising Scotland’s homes. By honing in on the challenge of creating warmer, drier, easier to heat homes, we are maximising our contribution to lower carbon emissions. More energy efficient homes require less energy to heat, and reducing the amount of energy we use is key to Scotland meeting its Net Zero targets.
Heating space and hot water accounts for 79 per cent of energy used in the home, and Scotland has the leakiest homes in Europe. The less heat a property keeps in, the more expensive it is to keep it warm. High energy usage is often a symptom of poor quality building fabric. Measures like external wall insulation can make a big difference. Tackling the problem of inefficient homes is a big task, and we’re expanding to meet the challenge. This year we’ve created over 40 new jobs across Scotland, including many in our Edinburgh office, with more people coming to join us every week. We’re now the biggest delivery agent for local authority AreaBased Schemes, and have agreed a threeyear strategic partnership with the Scottish Federation of Housing Associations to support its members.
We also have a long-standing partnership with the City of Edinburgh Council. We provide an energy advice service for Council tenants to help them manage their bills, address any energy issues, and support them to make the changes to make their homes warmer. Changeworks is also part of the Edinburgh Climate Compact and has been heavily involved in the Edinburgh Climate Commission.
Our ambitions for a decarbonised Scotland start here in the capital, just like Changeworks did. We hope you share that ambition, both here and further afield. If you want to join us on this journey to decarbonise Scotland’s homes, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to find
out how you can support our ambitions, and how we can support yours.