Zurich support Manx charity Energy & Sustainability Centre (ESC)

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ESC aims to help IOM work towards achieving 2050 net-zero targets. Zurich on the Isle of Man are supporting a new initiative to help the Island achieve its climate change commitments. 

The Energy & Sustainability Centre (ESC) is an independent, not-for-profit, Isle of Man charity led by earth scientist and Chair of the Manx Geological Survey, Dr Dave Quirk; former MHK, Ralph Peake; and environmental specialist John Boucher, who has a Master’s degree in sustainable energy.

Dave Quirk thanked Zurich for their support, and went on to explain the mission and vision behind ESC’s ‘empowering a green future’ motto. He said: “The climate crisis creates both global and local challenges. There is widespread public support for Isle of Man Government’s 2050 net-zero targets. ESC welcomes the Government’s view that the private and public sectors, and the wider community, must work together to achieve those targets. On the way to 2050, there are many important choices and decisions to make about technological, regulatory, planning and finance options. ESC – with our Manx background and a wealth of scientific and energy industry experience – aims to play a part in providing information and objective advice to support people in making the right choices.  For example, there are steps which can be taken now which will reduce energy costs immediately whilst it is probably best to wait with others until the direction the Isle of Man takes with power supply is determined.”

While the challenges ahead can seem daunting, he added, if the Isle of Man acts swiftly there are significant benefits to the economy and society. “ESC believes that the public and private sectors must work together to build a strong, commercially viable, renewable energy sector. In addition to the environmental benefits achieved by reducing dependence on fossil fuels, it also helps secure the Isle of Man’s future as an international business centre. Companies are looking to access green electricity, not just to meet their climate pledges but also because prices are stable and the source is secure. New investment will flow to the Island if it can offer its own sustainable power.”

He continued: “Several forward-thinking island communities are already making this happen – Orkney, El Hierro and Samsø are all excellent examples of both the value and the pride that comes from home-grown renewable energy projects. With this in mind, one of ESC’s priorities is to facilitate discussion about the different low-carbon options and solutions.”

One of the ways ESC will do this is through educational, animated video films. ESC is in the process of creating two, short, educational videos, both sponsored by Zurich. One is about climate change, the other is a vision of the Isle of Man entirely powered by renewable energy.

Bruce Pearson, CEO, Zurich International Life, said: “Sustainability is a major focus for Zurich, both locally and globally across the Zurich Insurance Group. The Energy & Sustainability Centre is an important initiative which we’re proud to support. The videos will help to get the message out about the Isle of Man’s commitment to net-zero emissions, as well as provide an optimistic vision of the future to inspire the whole community to play a part in reaching our 2050 targets.”

Further information is available at www.energysustainabilitycentre.im


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