Yesterday, The Independent newspaper in the UK did something rather amazing – it asked it’s readers for their views. Rather than giving readers the usual dose of opinion from the great and the good, the paper asked for the opinion of its readers. And they asked it on the most pressing issue of all: Climate change. The paper is then going to send these comments to the All-Party Inquiry on Climate Change.

Today the paper published the results in what they call the “Great Global Warming Debate”. The response, says The Independent, “has been nothing short of extraordinary”.

Here are just a few:

“Overwhelmingly important: introduce carbon trading for all flights landing in and/or taking off from Europe, external as well as internal, before Open Skies agreements with US prevent it. Start with mildly restrictive allocations, but propose to tighten year by year, and carry that out”.

“If the X thousands of houses planned for the South-east were all to have Photo Voltaic (PV) cells and solar hot water heating as a condition of planning this would start to reduce the reliance on fossil fuels”

“I believe we should revise housing standards to include energy conservation, water conservation, power generation, waste recycling, and even food production. We should also revise vehicle standards to encourage radically lighter, stronger vehicles. And make electric/biodiesel hybrid the standard for road vehicles”.

“We really do seem to be fiddling while Rome burns. The main problem is that people have yet to be convinced that the problem is life-threatening, looming and if we are to pass on a planet that is habitable for our children and grandchildren, we have little time left in which to act. There has to be a way to win the hearts and minds of this nation and demonstrate beyond doubt that the crisis is real”.

“The recent taxes on 4x4s announced by G Brown are a joke. Make the taxes swingeing – £1,000 per year for guzzlers. Also, tax by engine displacement, and add green taxes to manufacturers at point of production”.

There are more views on The Independent website. Also the paper is still inviting readers to send submissions to the All-Party Inquiry on Climate Dhange. Send your contribution to: Climate change debate, Independent House, 191 Marsh Wall, London E14 9RS or by e-mail to: climatechange@