A Winchester charity, which organises campaigns to create a net zero carbon city, has changed its name.

WinACC has updated its name to Winchester Action on the Climate Crisis to reflect the urgency of the climate situation.

Chris Holloway retired as chair at the AGM where this change was revealed.

He said: “Time really is running out if we are to keep global heating to the minimum possible. There’s been a dramatic shift in public opinion about the climate since WinACC was set up over ten years ago.

“Back in 2008, some people were still denying climate change was real. Now, people in Winchester know we face a climate crisis and they want action. The United Nations warns it’s ‘code red for humanity’. The global climate conference at COP26 made progress, but nowhere near enough.”

A public meeting on November 17 emphasised the urgent need for action by national government, as well as local residents and businesses.

The meeting heard that the latest report from WinACC, which breaks down the sources of greenhouse gas emissions in Winchester District, shows that very little has changed in the district over the past ten years, and some emissions have increased.

Only emissions from using electricity have gone down a lot since 2005. That's because it’s Government policy to phase out burning coal in electricity power stations.

Road transport is by far the biggest contributor to Winchester District’s carbon footprint. Home heating is the next biggest single source of a household’s carbon footprint, especially for homes that use oil for heating.

Jo Crocker, executive director, said: “As well as transport and home heating, we need to cut emissions from things that are made in other countries to be sold to someone in England. Things such as food, fashion and fridges.

“This includes the emissions in fossil fuels linked to shares owned by people in the UK. These extras are important. They add half and three-quarters as much again to the average local household footprint.”

The charity confirmed it will continue to present the case for better buses, better walking and cycling to bring an end to traffic blight, cut air pollution and harmful emissions from cars.

It will continue to help homeowners to make their homes more energy efficient and to move to heating that doesn't come from burning fossil fuels; to support more renewable energy, especially for solar farms; and to work to reduce emissions from abroad and investments in fossil fuels.