Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Why ‘Converging’?

To reduce the proven impact of climate change we need to reduce the total amount of carbon produced in the world and also reduce the imbalanced production of carbon between countries. These two immensely important processes are called Contraction & Convergence.We aim to achieve the above by bringing people together in common purpose, hence The Converging World.

‘Inequality’ is massive; can we really make a difference?

Morally, we feel compelled to tackle inequality and social injustice. And the impact of climate change will only exacerbate these problems. But we aren’t about abstract idealism. We know that our approach can reduce the gap between the energy-rich and energy-poor, the opportunity-rich and opportunity-poor. We may never create our ideal world, but our approach will undoubtedly reduce inequality and create a more balanced world.

Where did all this start?

Contraction & Convergence. Between 1992 and 1995, the Global Common Institute (GCI) highlighted the worsening asymmetry, or “Expansion and Divergence” of global economic development. It became clear that the global majority most damaged by climate changes were already impoverished by the economic structures of those who were also now causing the damaging emissions. To create a sustainable basis on which to resolve this inequity, GCI developed the “Contraction and Convergence” (C&C) model for future emissions. In 1995 the model was first introduced by the Indian Government. Since then C&C has been widely referenced internationally in the debate about achieving the objective of the UNFCCC. In 2000, C&C was the first recommendation of the UK Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution. See the Global Commons Institute www.gci.org.uk for a full explanation or read the article on wikipedia here.

How is the principle of Contraction and Convergence applied through the work of TCW?

The Converging World helps members of the developed world contract their carbon emissions by supporting schemes that work with contraction on a grass roots level. Members of the developed world are encouraged to donate to The Converging World to help us to undertake more clean, sustainable development projects in the developing world.

How do the finances flow through the TCW model?

We raise the finance for the turbines through donations. These donations fund wind turbines in India. Each donation is doubled in value, through 50% gearing, so it goes twice as far as it would otherwise, generating both electricty and carbon credits for sale. All the profits from this (more than twice what is initially invested) create a stream of long term funding, over twenty years, for clean sustainable development projects.

What percentage of donations is used to cover your operating costs?

We reclaim Gift Aid on eligible individual donations. Our longer term goal is to fund all our operating expenses from Gift Aid. In the meantime, as a new charity, our costs are covered by our founding donors so all of your donations go towards our capital fund for wind turbines in India.

On what experience does TCW base the advice it provides on low carbon lifestyles?

A panel of affiliates and other advisors that we use include DEFRA, the Sustainability South West agency, the Schumacher Institute for Sustainable Systems, member NGOs of the Schumacher Circle such as the Centre for Alternative Technology and many more.

How does TCW justify supporting the travel sector and maintain its stance on carbon reduction?

TCW wants to help individuals recognise their effect on the environment. Via our interaction with the travel industry we help inform users of their impact and we hope that through this people will choose to use less polluting methods of travel and see the benefits of conscious travel.