About Green House
Green House was set up in 2011 with the aim of leading the development of green thinking in the UK. It takes an ecological perspective, challenging current framings of issues. It is independent of political parties, campaigns and commercial vested interests.
Since 2011 we have published 25 reports, 30 ‘Green House gases’ (shorter opinion pieces) and six pamphlets as well as organised over 20 events. Our ‘Post Growth Project’ was started in 2012 and in 2014 led to the publication of a book of that name in partnership with the London Publishing Partnership in 2014.
Green House is a not-for-profit company, but not a charity, so it is difficult for us to get charitable funding. We are a small organisation, dispersed throughout the country, reliant on many hours of volunteer time.
Facing up to Climate Reality
We started this project in 2017 and are now at the point of publishing a book, Facing up to Climate Reality: Honesty, Disaster and Hope, with London Publishing Partnership. The book will be available in spring 2019. Our starting point for the project was that the time for false hope is past and only courageous realism will enable us to respond adequately to now inevitable and impending serious climate damage. We believe that this honesty is a necessary prequel to effective climate action.
We are seeking funding to publish and promote this book.
Authoritative science, from the IPCC and others, has already documented our looming climate plight, while powerful advocacy such as that of Naomi Klein and George Monbiot has urged last-minute action to avoid it. We do not seek to duplicate that work. Instead, we explore what truly facing up to the reality of our situation would mean in practice. What would actually be involved in accepting the inescapability, now, of real climate-driven disasters and the end of the dream of uninterrupted human ‘progress’? We seek answers to these questions by probing the barriers to the transformative adaptation which we now so urgently need, accepting that the world is already committed to escalating climate chaos, but yet, at the same time, not giving up hope of avoiding climate catastrophe.
The book, edited by John Foster, comprises an Introduction and ten chapters by a range of writers associated with Green House. On the theme of practical politics, Richard Douglas asks whether capitalism can survive the transition to a post-growth economy, and Peter Newell explores how the world political order might cope with +4 degree C, while Rupert Read and Kristen Steele emphasise the corresponding need for swift and dramatic localisation. Thinking about how present systems could respond, Anne Chapman documents a UK case-study of a town struggling to deal with an extreme weather event, while Jonathan Essex queries the resilience potential of current urban structures in general. The dangerous illusion that we could let ourselves off these hooks through geoengineering is comprehensively exposed by Helena Paul and Rupert Read. In its final section, the book steps back from specifics and moves to the crucial level of investigating framings for these societal challenges, within which we might (just maybe) rise to them. Nadine Andrews and Paul Hoggett offer a perspective from psychology, and Brian Heatley considers a surprising and intriguing historical parallel. Finally, John Foster shows how, without failing to remain realistic about the stark challenges which we confront, we might still build a mind-set allowing for hope.