Climate Choking Plans

Drax power station near Selby in Yorkshire has applied to the Planning Inspectorate for permission to replace its two remaining coal-fired units with much larger ones burning fossil (natural) gas.
 
Drax is already the biggest biomass burning plant in the world and the largest single emitter of COin the U.K
 
Drax claims that this is part of their “strategy to play a vital role in changing the way energy is generated as the UK moves to a low carbon future.” 
 
The reality is that Drax made a net loss last year and switching to burning gas would allow the power station to keep operating once the government’s pledge to phase out ‘unabated coal’ by 2025 comes into force. 
 
If this gas development goes ahead, it will tie the U.K. into the long-term burning of more fossil fuels at a time when we need to drastically reduce our carbon emissions to prevent catastrophic climate change. 
 
It will also enable Drax to continue burning millions of tonnes of wood pellets every year, many of which come from the clear felling of biodiverse forests in the U.S. 
 
If you agree that we should not allow Drax to increase our carbon emissions by burning gas and wood biomass, please help us to stop Drax’s proposed gas development by sending an objection to the Planning Inspectorate. 
 
The deadline for responses is Wednesday the 29th of August at 11.59pm
 
For more information about the environmental and climate impact of Drax’s gas plans, please see the Biofuelwatch briefing here. and follow links to make an objection.
Thanks to Cathy Monkey for sharing this news. Reducing CO2 emissions is core to all of the work of Herefordshire Green Network, particularly in our own lives here in Herefordshire – but of course we’re not an island, and strategies like this give us reason to act global ….

h.Energy 2018: Let’s Do This!

h.Energy is an event in Herefordshire that has been running since 2010.

Would you like to be involved this year? Please tell us how!

Crowdfunder link is also live – please support us here!

This year the event will take place over the weekend of October 13/14, have two main hubs (Hereford and Queenswood Country Park and Arboretum) and other pop-ups around the county according to interest.

Its aim: Promoting sustainable lifestyles, encouraging action to reduce carbon and providing practical support for carbon reduction initiatives.

Your interest and enthusiasm at this stage is what will shape the event – this year once again we currently have very little secured budget to spend on this event, so we are looking to partner with as many of you in our great network as possible.

Previously we have seen films, fun runs, workshops and puppetry all in the name of sustainable energy for life – what will you make happen this year?!

Please let us know how you could be involved in this form by FRIDAY 29th June 2018.

If you have an idea, but you’re not sure if you have the resources – come to our funding workshop with Herefordshire Community Trust on 2nd July. We’ll have a bid written in a morning – promise! 🙂

 

 

Film showing – TAWAI

Hunter-gatherers stalk their prey in a rainforest, acutely attuned to their surroundings, perceiving every sight, every sound. The film TAWAI contrasts the intense interconnectedness of tribal cultures with our own experience of living in urban environments. Here our sensory input is on overload, and we are forced to limit the amount we take in, habitually deadening ourselves to what is happening around us.

The question of interconnectedness is at the heart of this stunningly beautiful documentary from well-known BBC TV presenter and explorer Bruce Parry, who revisits tribes in Borneo and the Amazon to describe the changing lives of the people there.

After the film join Herefordshire Green Network for a discussion. Cecibel Egan of the Pachamama project joins us along with other expert voices from rural Herefordshire. Listening to ‘the voices from the forest’ we will be considering our own quests for reconnection in the context of such a rapidly changing world.

 

Film showing at Monday 9thJuly, 8pm at The Courtyard, Hereford. Followed by a discussion in the bar.

Fossil Free Herefordshire

Thank you Gareth and Patrick. A full house and a full workshop last night on how we can get pension funds to stop investing in fossil fuels.

They were talking about the UK parliament pension fund – but so many of the ideas could be used for other lobbying, working with councillors and much more.

Some tough questions, ranging from “if they don’t invest, surely someone else will…” to how to change the mind of someone that’s completely immovable! All questions answered and a load of positive actions in amongst the reality.

Here is a summary – if you’d like to do more please get in touch with Rebecca events@hgnetwork.org. We’ll have an interactive poll on this topic at River Carnival (need some pollsters) and there was real interest in working with sympathetic councillors on this issue. Get in touch!

  • Make contact with your MP – simple tool on the Divest Parliament website
  • Plenty of advice from other network members with experience of visiting our MPs if you’d like to arrange a visit (email if you’d like to be connected)
  • We can create our own pledge to ask councillors to sign – this will build support towards a campaign with MPs
  • Good advice from Councillor Jenny Bartlett – every public council meeting has space for questions, we can ask “How much of the Herefordshire pension fund is invested in fossil fuels?” and bring the issue higher up the agenda
  • Herefordshire shares its pension fund with Worcestershire, so using the links we have within this network would be a great start
  • A poll at River Carnival – “Do you know that your MP’s pension is linked to fossil fuels? Do you want that to stop?”
  • More ideas and resources at the Fossil Free website and email divestparliament@gmail.com to be put in touch with Gareth or Patrick – they are keen to offer support!
  • Share this post on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter and let’s get more people talking about ditching fossil fuel investments.

Thursday’s Inconvenience …

A decade ago Al Gore’s film ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ boldly raised the profile of climate change issues. A decade later ‘An Inconvenient Sequel’ picks up the baton…

Showing at the Courtyard Studio Theatre this important documentary will be followed by a discussion chaired by the Herefordshire Green Network, and preceded by a short film from the Size of Herefordshire.

This will be an uplifting evening: at the core of the Inconvenient Sequel is a sense that climate change can be overcome with human ingenuity and passion…

Thursday 12th April, 8pm

Studio Theatre, The Courtyard, Hereford, HR4 9YJ.

Please share the event on Facebook on Instagram and help us get the word out – thanks!

A message from Jeremy Leggett

Friends, colleagues and esteemed contacts

Things are moving so fast. Most of us are so busy. This slide show offers one person’s precis-for-the-busy of the first three months of 2018 in the related dramas of climate change, energy transition, big tech and the future of civilisation.

For the powerpoint version, with source urls, see www.jeremyleggett.net

 

Thanks to Rick Guest for sharing this very interesting collection…

Falling fossil fuel emissions!

Carbon Brief analysis shows the UK’s CO2 emissions from fossil fuels fell by 2.6% in 2017, driven by a 19% decline in coal use. This follows on the heels of a larger 5.8% drop in CO2 in 2016, which saw a record 52% drop in coal use.

The UK’s total CO2 emissions are currently 38% below 1990 levels and are now as low as emissions were back in 1890 – the year the Forth Bridge opened in Scotland and Oscar Wilde’s The Picture of Dorian Gray was published.

These findings are based on Carbon Brief analysis of newly released Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) energy use figures.

The post UK carbon emissions in 2017 fell to levels last seen in 1890!

 

Thanks to Caplor Energy for this positive news.

Ecological Footprinting

a photo of hiking boots

On Wednesday March 21st we are handing the HGN Gathering over to Pete Linnell who will run a session on ecological foot printing:

“Personal, Planetary, Political”

Whoever you vote for, whatever creed you live by, what really matters is the consequences of the choices you make.

The evening will outline a broad range of sustainability goals and critique a selection of indicator tools intended to test for achieving them. This examination will help us understand what effect our lives are having here and now and on everyone in the future, and include a nod to bleeding-edge policymaking and practice from other jurisdictions.

There will be a practical session on ecological foot printing (this is big picture stuff – NOT just carbon) – more on this before the 21st!

And Pete will also share some thoughts about existing policies in Wales and potential for adopting them in England.

 

Put the date in your diaries! Wednesday 21st March, 7.30pm – in our new home for our HGN Gatherings, the unexpectedly lovely Garden Room at Left Bank Village, Hereford, HR4 9DG.

To the Ends of the Earth..

Those of you who enjoyed the thought provoking script of the film HGN showed at The Courtyard last week might like to follow this link to a transcript of the film itself! What they can’t do these days.

Gordon Coppock also sent over this link for those of you who would be interested to read more about the energy cost of energy.

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