BEN Asks

Local mayoral hustings and elections are fast approaching. There is no time to waste if you want to have your voice heard and contribute to the city of Bristol and West of England Combined Authorities (WECAs) future narrative of a sustainable green future. The deadline to register to vote in the May 2021 local elections is midnight on Monday 19 April, and we want to encourage making every vote count.

As an organisation we are excited to present our contribution to a smart local energy agenda which we believe should be a strong focus in these upcoming elections. We have produced 10 ‘asks’ that we would like to hear being asked of candidates at the hustings (see listing below).

Here is our list of questions for candidates. Pick one and ask it!

Q1. Community Energy:  How can we grow and support our community energy sector to deliver a smart, local (community) energy system?

Q2. Renewable Energy: How can we ensure that more renewable energy is generated and community owned in Bristol?

Q3. Sustainably Heated Homes and building efficiency: a) How can we encourage take-up of energy efficiency measures in our homes (existing and future) to reduce heat demand? b) How can our homes be supplied with heat from renewable energy sources?

Q4. Green Workforce & Green Recovery: a) How can we employ and train a green workforce to deliver a smart local (community) energy system? b) How can we ensure that the inequalities in our current energy system are addressed?

Q5. NetZero Transport system for all: How do we transition to a NetZero integrated transport system that is affordable and accessible for all?

Q6. Improved focus on Air Quality: How can we ensure that in the future energy system air quality emissions are prioritised alongside reducing carbon emissions ?

Q7. Using the planning system to address NetZero: How can we ensure that climate change is addressed in new developments?

Q8. Alleviating fuel poverty: How can we eliminate fuel poverty in Bristol? a) What strategy and action plan should we follow? b) What is our timeline? c) What should be our initial actions over the next two years?

Q9.Engagement in Energy Issues: How can we increase opportunities to educate Bristol on energy issues, particularly in less affluent communities?

Q10. Reducing Consumption and Waste: How can we reduce consumption and waste across the city?

The background to each of these questions is explained in detail in our full policy document which you can download below:


Candidates for the West of England Combined Authority are:

Bristol City Mayor candidates are:

  • Alastair Watson, Conservative Party – AWAITING RESPONSE
  • Caroline Gooch – Liberal Democrats- REPLIED
  • Marvin Rees – Labour Party – RESPONDED TO ALL QUESTIONS
  • Sandy Hore-Ruthven – Green Party – REPLIED
  • Sean Donnelly – Independent – AWAITING RESPONSE
  • Oska Shaw – Independent – AWAITING RESPONSE
  • Tom Baldwin – Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition- AWAITING RESPONSE
  • John Langley – Independent – AWAITING RESPONSE
  • Robert Vernon Clarke – Reform UK – AWAITING RESPONSE

To find out more about the candidates and hustings visit the events page by Friends of the Earth. Listed below are some of the hustings BEN wishes to attend and encourage you to do also:

Bristol Mayoral Hustings:

Bristol WECA Mayoral Hustings: