01.03.24 Just transition

Just transition statement of intent – one year on

In January 2023 Bristol Climate & Nature Partnership published a statement of intent demonstrating our commitment to a just transition. In this blog post, we outline the action we’ve taken since.

Bristol Climate & Nature Partnership published a statement of intent on just transition at the start of 2023, to demonstrate our commitment to championing a response to the climate crisis that has fairness at its heart. We believe climate, nature and social justice are inextricably interlinked, and need to be tackled in tandem.

Since then, we’ve threaded just transition though various aspects of our work, including our key projects, our events, and our rebrand.

A just transition for Bristol

We held a Partnership gathering on just transition in June 2023. This brought over 120 people to the Trinity Centre to have a city conversation about just transition – what it means for Bristol, it’s residents and organisations; why it’s important, what’s happening already and what change is needed.

Keynote speaker Ed Atkins gave an overview of a just transition, alongside speakers on a range of topics including green jobs, energy, disability, race, business and participation. Participants then had discussions in small groups about the issues that mattered to them, and there were also creative contributions on the theme of just transition from local artists.

It was a rich and energising afternoon – an important platform to catalyse further discussions, collaborations and ideas around ensuring a fair response to the climate crisis.

Community Climate Action Project

Our new Community Leadership Panel on Climate and Just Transition is established to help bring a climate justice lens to strategic new projects and policies being developed in city. Expressions of interest are now open for the April panel session.

The project uses creativity to help make the climate conversation relevant to more and more diverse people. Over the last year we have commissioned three local creatives to develop just transition-themed work including a spoken word poem by city poet Kat Lyons, an eco-rap by Ian Solomon-Kawall (KMT Freedom Teacher) and as series of creative community events and short films which are currently being produced by Euella Jackson.

Working at the intersection of climate change and social inequality can be challenging and exhausting and with our community partners we hosted an event highlighting the importance of hope, joy and creativity within just transition work, as part of the 2023 Festival of the Future City.

Climate Leaders workshop

In November 2023 we organised a workshop for members of our Climate Leaders group. We explored what a just transition means, what the relevance is for Bristol and how it’s relevant to businesses. We also enabled participants to explore the unintended consequences of their organisation’s climate action on their staff, local community and supply chain.

It was valuable to pilot an approach to enabling organisations to identify how a just transition is relevant to them, and what action they might be able to take. We’re hoping to build upon this experience to support more organisations to embed just transition principles as part of their climate work.


On 1 February 2024 we rebranded as Bristol Climate & Nature Partnership, with a new look and website to better reflect our values, our level of ambition, and our commitment to climate, nature and social justice.

Principles of a just transition were central to what we set out to achieve through the rebrand. Accessibility was a key criteria for both the visual identity and the website, and our strapline ‘Acting together for fast and fair change’ emphasises our commitment to just transition. The lovely illustrations highlight that our work is very much about people as well as planet.

Theory of Change

We have embedded just transition within our new organisational Theory of Change, which outlines our vision for the city and how our work is helping to make this vision a reality. The process of developing the Theory of Change and ensuring just transition was integrated has sharpened our understanding of the impact we’re aiming to make and our unique role within the city and beyond.

Integration with city initiatives

Throughout the last 12 months we have worked hard to ensure just transition remains a central thread in the plans and development of collaborative city-wide projects. We were delighted to see this come to fruition in new projects such as Mission Net Zero, which builds upon the methodologies developed through our Community Climate Action project and aims to ensure just transition principles and equitable, inclusive engagement with communities remains at its heart.

Black & Green Ambassadors

Alongside partners Ujima Radio and supported by funding from the National Lottery Community Fund, we commissioned May Project Gardens to produce an insights report from the Black & Green Ambassadors programme, to better understand the positive impacts, challenges, opportunities for the future and recommendations for change.

The Partnership has learnt a huge amount from the project and the report continues to inform and inspire our internal reflection. The recommendations in the report are highly relevant to work on just transition, and we hope it proves valuable to other organisations and communities.

What’s next?

Our work on just transition is ongoing and evolving, and we will be continuing to embed just transition principles through our activities and the way we work.

We know this requires regular review and reflection, and listening to and learning from others. Amongst our action this year we are planning to have staff training on just transition to support our efforts and expand our understanding.

Thank you!

A huge thanks to our supporting members, partners and sponsors for supporting our work on just transition, with particular thanks to City Leap for their sponsorship of the June gathering and Climate Leaders workshop, and The National Community Lottery Fund whose funding supported the Community Climate Action project and Black & Green Ambassadors project.


Find out more about just transition

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