WITH a deeper understanding of the human impacts on our planet that we have today there has never been a more important time to act to change our lifestyles and our surroundings.

This comes at a time when there are decisions being taken about how our local authorities are structured.

Regardless of the outcome of this, it is essential that sustainability is embedded at front and centre of all political decisions going forward.

It is inspiring to see key local organisations working together to lead the conversation and consultation with the council and local stakeholders. This includes Taunton Transition Town, Extinction Rebellion (XR), Taunton Area Cycle Campaign (TACC), Arts Taunton, the Taunton Design Circle and the Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) Somerset.

We have strong support from Dixie Darch, portfolio holder for climate change for Somerset West and Taunton Council, and the environment is high on the agenda for council leader, Federica Smith Roberts.

While we may come from different perspectives and have healthy debates at times, we share the vision to create a sustainable Taunton, where the local economy and future generations can thrive.

This may seem like a cheap small page ad to promote some local organisations but for me it is a really a call to arms, a note that currents are rising.

A recent discussion with Karuna Tharmananthar - an active member of XR - led me to understand that recent discussions have been going on with regards to Taunton’s future under the banner of the Build Back Better agenda and the Green New Deal, and how we can change our town for the good.

This reflects exactly aims of an event a year and a half ago by the RIBA to champion building beautifully and sustainably in Taunton.

The conclusion of this discussion was we must pool resources and ideas and must organise ourselves so that we are placed locally to build the infrastructure and organisations that bolster our local and national efforts to fight climate change.

In short, it is time to act and get involved.