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Transition Town Timeline
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A year-by-year vision of a sustainable future

Shaun Chamberlin

7th July, 2009

The Transition Town movement has produced a year-by-year timeline to lead us to a happier, healthier society. Shaun Chamberlin outlines this vision - beginning with a landmark 2010 climate change accord

The Transition Vision is of a resilient, more localised society in which we faced the consequences of our former cultural stories honestly, heard the lessons they brought us and moved into a thriving, satisfying future.

* Acceptance of scientific evidence leads to fundamental changes in cultural assumptions
* Dominant sense that ‘there must be another way to live', given the unacceptable consequences of business as usual
* New social and economic models developed to fit new paradigm
* Recognition of the need to drastically and sustainably reduce energy consumption
* Widespread sense of hope, determination and common purpose


  • EU introduces Common Sustainable Food Policy
  • The 2010 Accord commits all world governments to preventing atmospheric CO2 concentrations topping 400ppm
  • UK government mandates a faster expansion of forests and woodland in the UK
  • UK airport expansion programme ‘shelved'
  • Tradable Energy Quotas introduced in UK
  • World oil production reaches peak



  • UK road expansion programme halted
  • Recycled building materials stores opening across the country



  • Lower energy holiday choices becoming increasingly popular, including airship cruises, travelling by canal boat, sailing on ‘pirate galleons' and simply exploring the local area (‘staycationing')
  • The target of 2,012 food gardens being in place in London in time for the London Olympics is exceeded
  • UK road speed limit reduced to 60mph



  • The year's top rating TV show is ‘Hot Composting with Amy Winehouse'
  • UK Government's ‘Fruit Forest UK' programme gives away free fruit trees across the UK
  • Global agreement reached to phase out coal production



  • UK population begins gentle reduction (around 0.3 per cent per year)



  • The most popular money lenders in the country are now credit unions, rather than banks and building societies
  • Programme introduced to reopen many of the UK railways closed in the 1960s
  • UK building regulations revised to ensure new buildings use 60% local materials, leading to a boom in local businesses providing materials for construction
  • Time Magazine declares 2015 ‘the Year of the Raised Bed'



  • ‘Peak cars' on UK roads passed



  • UK now imports only 10 per cent of its food and 35 per cent of its fruit
  • British car industry in tatters, many car plants converted to wind and tidal turbine manufacture



  • Provision of car parking space by Local Authorities falls by 40 per cent



  • Green Party wins 40 seats in election
  • Obesity has fallen 40 per cent from 2010 levels; average UK life expectancy officially reaches 81
  • 31 per cent of UK electricity demand met by renewable sources, partly thanks to substantial reductions in demand



  • Pension age for both men and women raised to 66



  • Mental health problems have reduced to directly affect just over 1 in 6 people's lives, compared with around 1 in 4 in 2007



  • UK oil and gas production down to one-sixth of 2007 levels
  • 70 per cent of UK electricity is renewable
  • Britain 96 per cent self-sufficient in food
  • Average UK life expectancy officially reaches 82, thanks to major reductions in heart disease, obesity, cancer and traffic accidents


Extracted from The Transition Timeline by Shaun Chamberlin (Green Books, £12.95). To order your copy at the special offer of £10.95 with free p&p (UK only), phone 0845 4589910 quoting the Ecologist reader offer. All major credit cards accepted



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