Greenest family in land want to lead climate change battle

'Green' family at dining room table

The Kumar Mitchell family - Credit: Submitted

North Devon's 'Greenest Family in the UK' are sharing their ideas and inspiration to help in the battle against climate change.

Hot on the heels of COP26, celebrated environmental activist, Satish Kumar, and family, who live in Hartland, were the winners of the recent People. Environment. Achievement Award for Greenest Family 2021.

Now they want to help families across Britain play their part in mitigating climate change and ‘Shop4good’ this Christmas.

Now in its 11th year, The P.E.A Awards is the UK’s longest standing environmental awards body.

Satish and his wife June Mitchell live and breathe a green life which has been passed on to their children, Mukti and Maya Kumar Mitchell who are now low-carbon lifestyle pioneers and live not far away near Bideford.

Mukti and Maya - who run a not-for profit, Carbon Savvy, working to support councils, businesses and individuals to save C02 - have  been spearheading a recent Shop4good campaign in the South West.

The campaign imparts helpful advice for shopping in a way that’s both good for individual wellbeing as well as low impact on the environment. Following an avid response to this campaign, the Kumar Mitchell family are now extending it across the nation.

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Satish, author of Soil, Soul, Society and the driving force behind the UK’s longest-standing green magazine, Resurgence & Ecologist for nearly 50 years, says: "While governments have set targets at COP26, it’s up to all of us – businesses, organisations, individuals and families - to play our part by reducing our own carbon footprints. Shopping is a significant part of our carbon footprints so shopping sustainably is a great way we can all play our part in helping to turn the targets into reality.

Green campaigner sat at table

Satish - Credit: Submitted

"As well as buying low-carbon products we need to ensure our money goes to supporting sustainable businesses who produce things in a way that is good for the environment. Buying choices make a difference and every penny is a vote. We can build the world we want for ourselves and our families through the way we spend.

“A recent study from The Economist Intelligence Unit proposes that consumer buying choices are doing as much to help the climate as governments. So with Black Friday and the festive season around the corner, we want to support families across Britain to shop in a way that is good for the climate whilst also fulfilling their own desires.”

A former Jain monk, Satish, now 84, famously walked around the world for peace in 1962-1963. He has authored 10 books, presented various documentaries including BBC TV’s Earth Pilgrim, and been the guiding spirit behind a number of internationally respected ecological and educational ventures, including Devon's Schumacher College.

Satish’s wife June, a keen gardener and environmentalist, was co-editor of Resurgence for 30 years. An acclaimed low-carbon living pioneer and creator of a globally acclaimed carbon footprint calculator, Mukti built and sailed a zero carbon micro yacht around Britain in 2007, giving talks on how to reduce your carbon footprint which reached a media audience of 10 million.

He is co-founder of Mitchell & Dickinson, an insulation company helping owners of period and listed properties to save carbon. Formerly a professional tango dancer turned teacher, Maya has edited a number of environmental books and is a dedicated eco parent. Her daughter, 11-year-old Samay Ball, refuses to fly and attends quarterly meetings with her local council to help keep their carbon reductions on track.

Mukti Mitchell says: “I believe one reason why our family won the P.E.A. Greenest Family Award is because we’ve always looked for ways to make saving CO2 fun and enjoyable, and that is exactly what Shop4good is all about.

Green campaigner cycling

Mutki cycling - Credit: Submitted

"After 25 years of researching low carbon living, I can vouch that most of the things you can do to reduce your carbon footprint actually save you money and make you happier and healthier. Here are some of the things we most enjoy about living a low carbon lifestyle through the way we give gifts at Christmas – I hope they will inspire you to Shop4good in the lead up to Christmas!”

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