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A personal mission to change the world

Updated Monday, 30th November 2009

Emphasising the role of charities in combating environmental issues, Filippo Locatelli, from Global Action Plan, shares his personal story from the Faith and Climate Change Conference in London.

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Interviewer: Can you tell us a little bit about how you ended up working on environmental issues?

Filippo Locatelli: Okay. Let’s say that I’ve always been interested in environment since I was a child because I always felt it like a duty to do something for the environment, and I always had the feeling that people didn’t really understand which were the consequences of their behaviours towards the environment, so I decided to study like environmental engineering because I felt it like the best way to have an impact on this issue. And so that’s it basically. I graduated and then I wanted to gain experience in the charity world and that’s why I started work for Global Action Plan.

Interviewer: Can you say a little bit about Global Action Plan and what you do?

Filippo: Okay. Global Action Plan, as I said before, is a charity that promotes environmental awareness and carbon emission reductions in the communities through different projects that work with businesses, households, schools. And I’m working with them as a volunteer during my spare time and sometimes I’m an interactive display educator like …

Interviewer: Can you say something about the display?

Filippo: Yes. This one is one of the displays that we have, it’s called the energy bike, and it’s a tool that is designed to raise people’s awareness about environment and climate change. And it’s basically a tool designed to give a physical perception of how much energy it takes to get some appliances working, because as I said before many people don’t have a physical perception about how much energy it takes to run some appliances and which is the impact of these behaviours on the environment. So through this display you can have a physical perception on what it takes and, hopefully, it will get some people thinking about their behaviours and the impact they have on the environment.

Interviewer: Next I’d like you to think about what you personally might be doing in an environmental capacity in a year, in five years, in ten years’ time?

Filippo: Well hopefully change the world. That’s not very easy. So let’s say that for the moment the target is to gain some experience and then probably we’ll see. I’d like to work more in the policy environment, so something about like United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change or, okay these are the big dreams but even like in the charity environment I think you can achieve really big results, so.

Interviewer: And what about on, rather than you personally, what about, big question this, humanity as a whole, how do you see us changing or not changing in the next one year, five years, ten years?

Filippo: Wow, that’s a big question, even because we have this big summit in Copenhagen coming up, so. I don’t know, at the moment it’s getting a bit slow but I have big hopes for the future, so. For sure we’re not going to change completely the world, but I think there’s going to be some improvements for sure. I’m pretty confident.

Interviewer: Finally, before I get you to get on the bike, can you put yourself somewhere on the spectrum between optimism and pessimism?

Filippo: I would say slightly in the optimism because I’ve always been an optimistic person and, if not, I wouldn’t have been here doing this. So let’s say optimistic but not too much. Let’s get the people to feel the pressure, they have to do something more.

Interviewer: Finally, can I ask you to get on the bike to show us a demonstration?

Filippo: Yes. Okay, at the moment we’ve plugged the old fashioned bulbs and the CFL, the new bulbs. And I can show you. I can feel how much it takes to get these appliances working so hope you get one day the chance to try it as well.

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