On Saturday 13th October Birmingham Friends of the Earth (BFoE) gathered in Chamberlain Square wearing green hard hats and carrying a banner reading ‘Green is working’, as part of a national day of action for the Clean British Energy (CBE) campaign.

So we went to queue in the centre of Birmingham, subverting the Conservative 1979 election ‘Labour isn’t Working’ poster, to make the point to the government that clean energy is good for the planet and good for our economy. The stunt drew the attention of many people passing by, while also receiving coverage in our local newspapers, the Birmingham Post and Birmingham Mail, helping the message to spread more widely.

Friends of the Earth (FoE) groups all over the country took part, staging either ‘Green is Working’ stunts, or a tug-of-war with Osborne action. The stunts drew attention to the fact that there are already nearly 1 million green jobs, with clean energy creating huge numbers of jobs. BFoE’s own research shows that 1300 new jobs in solar power could be created in Birmingham alone.

Friends of Earth’s day of action intended to demonstrate to the Chancellor, George Osborne, that he needs to stop blocking the green economy, as well as highlighting that the environment and the economy are not incompatible. This government has an opportunity to make a greener energy future a reality by giving high priority to renewable energy in the Energy Bill, which is to be debated in Parliament from November.

The CBE day of action was great fun and impressed upon people the potential of the green energy market in a highly visual way. Hopefully this will be the beginning of more green jobs both in Birmingham and in the UK!