Latest HGN News

Latest news from around the Herefordshire Green Network. Views expressed are those of the individual authors and not necessarily HGN.

HGN AGM and festive drinks

Herefordshire Green Network members are reminded that our AGM takes place on Wednesday 4 December at 5.30pm at Left Bank Village, Hereford.

The formal business (which should take no more than about 10 minutes) will be followed by a people’s assembly to discuss the question:

  • What do members need and want from HGN over the next three years?

We very much hope that as many members as possible will will join us to practice democracy in action, and help shape the network’s priorities for the immediate future.

Afterwards, we will repair to the bar for festive drinks and green cheer!

How to grill your election candidates…

We’re not suggesting that you light up your barbecue… although you might be tempted at times!

Here are some suggestions that local XR activists have put together for possible questions about climate change, to be used at elections hustings. Together, let’s make this the climate election.

  • Do you accept that to tackle flooding in Herefordshire we have to commit expenditure from central government now because we are in an emergency situation?
  • If you are elected will you commit to supporting the XR Three Demands Bill in the next parliament?
  • What will you do about the large British oil & gas companies that have to change the fundamentals of their business for the UK to get to zero carbon?
  • Should Boris Johnson take part in the TV debate on the climate emergency with the other Parties?
  • How would you go about reducing the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere?
  • Will you commit to ensuring we can plant a million trees in Herefordshire?
  • Given that Parliament and Herefordshire Council have now declared a Climate Emergency, what steps do you plan to take to make all the new housing going up all over the county carbon neutral?
  • A warming planet will lead to increasing instances of flooding in Herefordshire, leading in turn to crop failures, further soil erosion and human displacement.  What measures will your party take to mitigate these?
  • What are you personally doing on the issue of Climate Change, outside of your political work?
  • House and major roads development are leading to more and more habitat loss, thereby depleting our wildlife.  What measures do you plan to take to reverse these declines?
  • With the Climate emergency becoming ever more real and immediate, legally binding and immediate legislation is needed to protect our environment.  What do you propose?
  • How would your party support the hundreds of local councils who have declared a climate emergency (including Herefordshire) to meet their ambition of achieving carbon neutrality by 2030?
  • What will your party do to ensure people living in rural areas who can’t afford an electric car will be able to travel once diesel and petrol cars are banned?
  • Parliament has declared a climate emergency, but government has not. Will your party work to have the next government declare a climate and ecological emergency by the end of 2020, having consulted with the people through a Citizens Assembly?
  • Parliament is organizing a Citizens’ Assembly on climate change, but this is advisory and not binding on government. Will your party change the Assembly’s terms of reference so that its recommendations are binding?
  • To get to zero carbon, very significant changes will be needed to the economy and to society. For example, some traditional industries will become redundant putting people out of a job, and the UK will have to become much more self reliant in food production.  What plans does your party have to deal with such issues?
  • Much of the migration from the Global South into Europe is a result of climate change. How will your party help other countries deal with the effects of climate change so that fewer people feel the need to seek refuge from rising temperatures and food shortages and are driven to migrate to the UK?
  • How much money will your party commit to spend on dealing with climate chaos between now and 2030?
  • Will your party work with other parties in a government of national unity to address the climate emergency?
  • What will your party do to cap and reduce the emissions from aviation?
  • How will your party transform road transport, including road building and maintenance, so that it is zero carbon?
  • The NFU has an ambition for UK agriculture to make a net-zero contribution to climate change by 2040. What policies will your party put into effect to ensure this happens, and what can be done to bring forward that date? How will such policies also reverse biodiversity loss?
  • Parties have made pledges to have full-fibre broadband available to every UK home and business by 2025 and 2030, i.e. 20 to 25 years earlier than the UK currently intends to reach carbon neutrality.  The climate emergency represents an existential threat and requires government to urgently mobilise to make the UK carbon neutral before the end of the next decade. Will your party commit to this?
  • Action to slow climate change by reducing emissions is essential, but will not prevent the UK being increasingly affected by the consequences of global warming, such as flooding, heat waves and poor air quality. How will your party prepare society for this changing world?
  • To limit the damage from global warming, the UK cannot act alone. It is in our self-interest to ensure other countries follow a path to achieve zero carbon in the next decade. What would your party do in government to get the international community to take faster more effective action?
  • When would your party mandate all new homes in the UK are zero carbon?

Election hustings at the Left Bank

On Wednesday 27 November, Left Bank Village is holding a hustings evening. All four candidates for the Hereford and South Herefordshire constituency will take part: Anna Coda (Labour), Lucy Hurds (Lib Dem), Jesse Norman (Conservative) and Diana Toynbee (Green Party).

It will be a Radio 4 Any Questions? format; former Bishop of Hereford, Anthony Priddis has agreed to be the chair.

This is a great opportunity to listen to the December 12 standing candidates respond to what will undoubtedly be a wide range of questions – and for you to submit a question*! Audience questions to info@herefordleftbank.com.

Doors  open at 7pm for 8pm start. Organised by Left Bank, Nat Waring, Alan Adams.

* Some possible questions, put together by local Extinction Rebellion activists, follow in a separate post.

Please note: Herefordshire Housing evening postponed.

Zero Carbon Leominster: the story continues

A reminder that Transition Leominster’s  Zero Carbon Leominster working groups are meeting on Wednesday 27th November, 7pm at Leominster Community Centre.

We have been holding meetings all summer and now our project groups are taking shape. Come and join us and be part of our zero carbon Leominster story.

Tune in to Herefordshire Tree Week

Herefordshire Tree Week launches next Friday (22 November) with an evening of music in the lovely environment of The Marches Gallery in Kington.

Live acoustic music will be provided by young folk band Galivant, and violinist Kat Moore. Refreshments will be available and there will be a raffle to raise money for the Veteran Black Poplar Restoration Fund.

The event runs from 6-8.30pm.

Full details of the Herefordshire Tree Week programme can be found on the website https://h-trees.net

Make, Do and Mend x Life and Soul Kitchen Christmas Special

Join us for another day of free activities and delicious food at the Life and Soul Kitchen.

Christmas is around the corner but how do we enjoy it without damaging the planet and our wallet?

Come on down to make home-made wreaths from foraged materials or why not give a loved one the gift of a treasured possession restored to its former glory? Ginn is here to teach you how to give your clothes a new lease of life through sewing, darning and embroidery.

10am – 3pm, Saturday 16th of November

The Life and Soul Kitchen, Unit 1 Three Elms Trading Estate, HR4 9PU Hereford

Wildlife charity calls for Ledbury volunteers

Herefordshire Wildlife Trust’s Ledbury shop is searching for new volunteers, so that it can continue to raise funds for the charity’s work at nature reserves across Herefordshire.

The shop is enjoying a surge in donations and customers since new manager Sue Daynes joined the team in August, and now needs more people to help with running the shop.

The Trust manages 55 nature reserves across the county, as well as running habitat restoration projects and a programme of environmental activities and education. Winter is one of the Trust’s busiest periods, as it’s the time when many woodland management tasks, such as coppicing and hedge laying, are taking place. Teams of volunteers and staff are busy on sites throughout Herefordshire’s beautiful landscapes ensuring that our wild places remain havens for our wildlife. The Trust’s charity shop is one of the key ways that the charity raises money to support its work.

Volunteers are needed to help with all sorts of tasks from welcoming customers and sorting donations, to specialist work such as researching books and antique items. Sue Daynes says, “We have a fantastic group of volunteers at the shop, but we can’t keep up with our great donations and lovely customers. We’d love to hear from anyone who might be able to spare a few hours each week to join the team – we’re a very friendly bunch!”

Anyone interested can pop into the shop at 4, The Homend, Ledbury; or contact Sue at s.daynes@herefordshirewt.co.uk or call 01531 635946.

Cook club for winter Wednesdays

A new wave of free cooking workshops has been announced, running on Wednesdays throughout the winter at the Kindle Centre, next to Asda in Hereford.

The sessions are open to all adults including parents, the elderly, unemployed, low income households and the socially isolated, and aim to get people cooking healthy, budget-friendly meals from scratch to take home for their households to eat that night.

Sessions are fun, informal and friendly, in hands-on small groups of six to eight participants at a time. People can pick and choose sessions to take part in or come to them all; booking is essential.

Please promote to your networks!

Bodenham Lake wins award for reedbed

The Lugg Wetland Gem reedbed creation project at Bodenham Lake has won a Canal and River Trust Living Waterways Award in the category of ‘Natural Environment’.

Reedbed is one of the most important habitats in the UK for birds to roost, nest and feed in, so we are creating 1.5 hectares of it at Bodenham Lake. Throughout September and October, diggers have been working to create new islands of reedbed on the eastern shore of the lake. Contractors JPR Environmental have started work in front of the southern bird hide to make muddy areas in which wading birds such as snipe and oystercatcher can feed on insects in the mud, a bank suitable for sand martin and kingfishers to nest and finally three new gravel coated islands for ground nesting birds like little ringed plover.

Unfortunately, we have not been able to complete the work this year, because of flooding and elevated water levels. The remainder will be completed in September 2020, after the bird breeding season.

This work has been funded mainly through the European Regional Development Fund, but with thanks to everyone who has also donated to the Bodenham Lake fundraising appeal.

We want to hear your thoughts about Bodenham Lake Nature Reserve and its restoration through the Lugg Wetland Gem project. It would be much appreciated if you could fill out this short survey:

https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/6699MCQ

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