THE CONVERGING WORLD tells the incredible story of one community’s attempt to change their world for the better. Faced with the challenge of making the English village of Chew Magna a ‘zero waste’ society, Pontin developed a groundbreaking non-profit scheme that twinned them with Tamil Nadu, a poor rural community in southern India. He helped set up a system of wind turbines for Tamil Nadu that would not only reduce the community’s reliance on fossil fuels but also provided a local source of sustainable income. The carbon credits produced through this scheme were then sold in Chew Magna to individuals and businesses to offset emissions they cannot yet reduce – all part of a larger local zero-waste effort.
The effects of this scheme have been dramatic and exhilarating – while Chew Magna gets closer to zero waste, Tamil Nadu’s carbon emissions and poverty levels are diminishing accordingly. Pontin’s story presents a model of action for any individual or community concerned about climate change, environmental damage, social inequality and the plight of the third world.