12 Characters in Search of the Apocalypse

Extinction Rebellion would like to invite you to an evening of exploring different responses to our predicament in a structured way followed by a general discussion.

Thursday 31st January
6:30 – 9:30pm

(arrive in time for a prompt start please)

The Swan Room
St Michael’s Hospice
Bartestree
Herefordshire
HR1 4HA

The evening is FREE, but if you are able, please support the hospice with a donation as they are kindly not charging for the room or tea.


The US author Andrew Boyd interviewed lots of people about their responses to our predicament and developed 16 monologues representing the different responses he received. Andrew Boyd’s work was published in Volume 11 of The Dark Mountain Project & first performed in Portsmouth October 17. In order to bring this to a larger audience, Climate Change Conversations – ’12 Characters in Search of an Apocalypse’, was developed as a Giraffe Social Enterprises (GSE) production of his work. Jason, who ran the evening I attended has been very helpful in making it possible for me to do so too.

During the evening 12 Characters offer their diverse, complex perspectives on living today, what they see coming towards them, and what they are (or aren’t) doing about it. Using the words of the Characters as seeds for our own conversation we will have a chance to engage and explore our own complicated relationships with the questions that arise because of the unravelling of the living systems that we are part of.

We will begin promptly at 18:30 hrs with the reading of the 12 monologues. Please arrive between 18.00 hrs and 18:30 hrs to get re

 

freshments and settle. The readings take around 90 minutes with brief interludes for discussion. Our time afterwards is for an open conversation to explore the affects these changes are having on ourselves, our families and our communities.

XR Hereford hope to see you there!

 

Courtyard Film Night!

 

 

 

Join us on 6 February for a discussion about the themes in the film led by Linda Casey. Linda is an Art Historian and Independent Lecturer and Official Guide at Tate Modern and Tate Britain lecturing at both Tate Galleries.
This screening is run in partnership with Herefordshire Green Network.

Sixteen years after the release of the ground-breaking film ‘Rivers and Tides – Andy Goldsworthy Working with Time’ director Thomas Riedelsheimer has returned to work with the artist. ‘Leaning into the Wind – Andy Goldsworthy’ follows Andy on his exploration of the layers of his world and the impact of the years on himself and his art. As Goldsworthy introduces his own body into the work, it becomes at the same time even more fragile and personal and also sterner and tougher, incorporating massive machinery and crews on his bigger projects.

“A mesmerising film about art and time.”
Leslie Felperin, The Guardian ★★★★

British Independent Film Awards 2017 Nominee Best Cinematography and Best Music Edinburgh International Film Festival 2017 Nominee Best Documentary Feature Film

For more information and to book tickets, click here!

Herefordshire Council’s Big Energy Saving Week

The event, running on the 25th and 26th of January 2019, will be hosted by the council alongside Keep Herefordshire Warm and Marches Energy Agency, a registered charity specialising in energy advice.

What’s on offer?

“Many residents will be feeling the pinch after Christmas, with energy price rises and cold weather on the way. Often people don’t know they can save hundreds of pounds by changing energy supplier, and access extra money such as the £140 Warm Home Discount.

There are also grants out there for heating and insulation improvements – delivering thousands of pounds in funding to some households such as low income households with no central heating or broken heating systems.”

For more information, click here

Carbon Reduction in Herefordshire

 

An update from Extinction Rebellion on meeting with Herefordshire Council on Wednesday, 16th of January
“About thirty people attended the meeting to learn about Herefordshire Council’s work on climate change, with a view to building an ongoing relationship between Extinction Rebellion and the Council, and to pave the way for a Council motion on Climate Emergency.

Summary – the Council has set targets for reducing its own carbon emissions, and has published an aspiration for the whole of Herefordshire to meet the UK Climate Change targets, i.e. 80% reduction by 2050. It is working with residents and business to help reduce energy use and carbon emissions.

The targets and plans as they stand do not match XR’s stated demand of achieving a net zero carbon Britain in 2025.

A motion is being developed by opposition party Councillors to have Herefordshire declare a Climate Emergency. It is hoped that this will be debated at the March full Council meeting (8 March 2019).

Council stressed the need for us to all work together on developing a carbon descent plan that reflects the increased urgency of climate change.

This was an extremely useful session and we’d like to thank Trish Marsh for organising it at short notice and Ben Boswell for delivering an information-rich presentation.

Notes on the meeting follow. Links are included to key documents referred to in Council’s presentation.

_________________________________________________________________________________

The meeting was chaired by Councillor Trish Marsh.

Ben Boswell, Energy and Active Travel Manager, Herefordshire Council, presented an overview of Council’s work over the past few years to reduce carbon emissions, and outlined the initiatives currently being taken.

There are two areas of work:

1. The Council’s own estate – its building and its vehicles;
2. The rest of Herefordshire – domestic and businesses properties, transport etc.

1. The Carbon Management Plan from 2017 covers the first.  It sets a target for a 40% reduction in carbon emissions by 2021 over 2008 levels arising from the Council’s own estate.

One big success has been the conversion of streetlighting to LEDs: download CMP17 here to read more

2. Council has signed up to the UK Climate Change Act targets (80% reduction by 2050, and 34% by 2020), applying to the whole County, not just its own estate.

Many initiatives are underway with other parties to help them reduce their energy consumption and carbon emissions. New Leaf was set up to drive this. In 2014, New Leaf and HC kicked off the ‘Re-energising Herefordshire’ Project with its first report –  available here. The Herefordshire Local Nature Partnership is now managing the project. Many local organisations have signed the Re-energising Herefordshire Charter:

“WE HAVE AGREED therefore to work together; separately in our individual organisations – and where appropriate with our members – to Re-energise Herefordshire, with the intention of:

  • reducing the county’s carbon emissions to the targets stated 

  • growing a resilient, localised, low carbon economy 

  • enhancing the wellbeing of all sections of our community 

  • improving our food and energy security 

  • reducing fuel poverty and other forms of social vulnerability 

  • adapting proactively to changing climatic and weather conditions. “

Re-energising Herefordshire proposed a carbon descent for Herefordshire:

The 2050 target in this graph is 80% by 2050. Please link to the full report if you want a clearer view of the chart and text.

Specific initiatives mentioned by Ben include:

The Business Futures Forum – chaired by Gareth Williams of Caplor Energy. Set up in 2013-14, it has around 100 businesses sharing ideas about business sustainability – energy efficiency, material use, carbon management. The forum is led by businesses and supported by Council.

Business Energy Efficiency Programme – free energy efficiency assessments.

Business Travel Grants – to help businesses moves to more sustainable modes of travel, e.g. free bike loans for apprentices, grants for bike shelters.

Keep Herefordshire Warm (KHW) – run by Marches Energy Agency, provides independent advice to residents on managing heating, it used to provide funding for insulation when it was available from ECO, now have to work harder to secure financial help.

KHW have produced a Heat Loss map – an aerial survey done in 2016 of most buildings in Herefordshire which gives an indication of the thermal performance, specifically the amount of heat being lost through the roof. Go to this Council webpage to see if your home/place of work was surveyed.

Active Travel – initiatives aimed at persuading residents to reduce car use, by promoting walking and cycling. See Destination Hereford presentation and report for analysis of the effectiveness of various programmes. For example, the 2015 Hereford Travel Survey responses reported that:There has been a net change of 2.7% from car driver journeys to public transport and active travel modes over the last three years for main journey purpose;”

Coming soon – Hereford City Bike share scheme, and a revised Choose How You Move travel guide for Hereford city showing cycling paths, walking routes and bus services.

Electric vehicle support – Council has bought hybrid and fully electric pool cars. Intends to upgrade existing public EV charging points to fast-chargers., and is working out a strategy for a wider network of points. Future housing developments will be required to have charging points.

Heat Network – plans are being developed for a possible district heat network in the city centre. See page 25 of CMP17.

QUESTION and ANSWER session

  • Why so many traffic lights? They increase carbon emissions by interrupting traffic flow. BB: “ not my field”
  • We need a carrot and stick approach to reduce car usage in the city, how about reducing car parking spaces like Copenhagen. BB: “Council vision is a walking / cycling city”.Questioner – City Link Road is an example of what not to do: it prioritises cars over everything else.
  • Why not Park and Ride? BB “ not against in principle, but it needs greater modal shift out of cars to facilitate faster bus journeys, and this is a hard sell”
  • How would you ramp up the ambition on carbon reductions? BB: ” the key thing is behaviour change, we need to be supportive, not telling”.
  • What one thing would really help? BB – need time to consider.
  • What can XR do? BB: “ encourage behaviour change”.
  • Why do some new builds at Rotherwas have no solar? BB “Planning law does not give Council the power to require private developers to install RE” TM: “ Revision of Core Strategy Local Plan in 2019 is opportunity to adopt policies on this”.
  • More needs to be done to reach out to householders about energy use etc.
  • Persuade people to spend money on efficiency / RE by illustrating the financial savings.
  • Why not share thermal imaging data with Parish Councils to try to get more interest? Why are resources and documents on Council website about energy and the environment so hard to find? They should leap out at you on the home page.
  • Parish Councils could be invited to join Herefordshire Green Network.
  • Will Council commit to coming back with a carbon management plan in 6 months that aligns with XR ambition?
  • Environmental physics (and chemistry) dictate the course and pace of climate change, this must be recognised as it trumps politics and money.
  • How can we persuade businesses and schools to reduce traffic? How about car-free days and tackling the school run?
  • It’s Our County are developing a shadow budget emphasising sustainability, for consideration at Council in February.”

 

 

Early signs of Spring

 

Out walking this week we have seen daffodils, snowdrops and smatterings of white blossom, all harbingers of an early spring to follow this mild winter. They may yet prove to be false prophets but there does seem to be something in the air, as we have been very  busy making connections and new friends. Wednesday was a big day for our calendar, as we met with Ben Boswell of Herefordshire Council, alongside XR Hereford, to talk about sustainability in the county. It was a very positive meeting, and we hope to make ever stronger links with the council, who we think is making great progress. We will be reporting on that meeting in more detail in the coming days. That same evening saw us co-host a gathering, once again with XR Hereford, which was well attended, with over 50 people coming along to hear more about the movement, its values and plans for the future. Photos and stories from the event itself will come shortly!

This has been a fantastic first week as administrator, getting to know more about the network and all the wonderful things happening within the county. As some of you may have noticed, our Facebook page has become a lot more active! Please continue to share stories, news and ideas with us – this is what we live for! For those not yet members, why not join us and become part of our movement? If you’d like to know more about why, click here!

I hope to meet more of you in the coming weeks. Get in touch with us and tell us about the brilliant things you are doing to make our county more sustainable.

Groundswell; Friends of the Earth events in Birmingham and Bristol!

 

Friends of the Earth will be running events across the UK as part of Groundswell 2019. These events will be a chance to listen to experts, exchange ideas and attend brilliant workshops. If you would like to attend these events, please find the relevant links below;

Birmingham event on the 8th of June 2019

Bristol event on the 15th of June 2019

There are also events in Darlington, Cambridge, London and Manchester, should those dates suit you better. Click here to find out more about them!

Anyone attending, please report back and share, share, share!

 

 

 

Hereford Seed Swap at the Courtyard

SEED SWAP – with potatoes

Saturday 2nd February 2019      10am – 2pm

Courtyard Theatre, Hereford

FREE EVENT

Come along and swap seeds, plants and tips. 

Even if you have nothing to swap, you can still join in

and take home some seeds or plants.

Newbies are always very welcome at this friendly event,

and we look forward to seeing familiar faces.

MINI POTATO DAY

For the first time there will be seed potatoes for sale –

18 varieties available, at a modest 15p per tuber.

Great opportunity to buy all your Seed Potatoes!

STALLS

·       Tools for Self Reliance charity – they collect old tools

(so bring yours along), and also sell a wide range of their

refurbished tools;

·       Tool sharpening service;

·       Cottage Herbery;

·       Composting advice;

·       Bees/Honey/Jam and more…

TALK

Free Talk at 11.30 by Kevin Alviti on Unusual Vegetables.

Kev is a knowledgeable and highly entertaining speaker. 

He is a seasoned, multi-skilled homesteader and blogger.

There’s lots of advice and opinion on offer too…

For more information:

Email: shed@swapseeds.org.uk

Phone: 07880 730880

Facebook: Seed Swap Herefordshire

 www.swapseeds.org.uk

Kleen Winter Event

Kleen are hosting a talk and discussion at 19.30 on the 22nd of January at Parish Rooms, Church Road, Kington HR5 3AG. Join them to hear more about Electric Vehicles Now; practicality, pollution and charging infrastructure! If you’re thinking of making the change, come to this!

 

Sian Berry’s Herefordshire Visit!

 

 

 

Happy Monday everyone!

Sian Berry, co-leader of the Green Party, is coming to Herefordshire on Friday 8 February. This is primarily to help launch the Green Party’s campaign for the May 2019 County Council Elections, but they would also like to invite non-party members who share their values on climate change, nature and transport to join them at one of two events, both on 8 February:

Leominster, 1pm at The Forbury; join Sian for a buffet lunch and a chance to chat.

Hereford, 7.30pm in the Garden Room at The Left Bank; Sian will make a speech and take questions.

The Green Party firmly believes that having a stronger representation on the County Council will help local efforts to deal more effectively with climate change and the environment.
To help the party ensure they have sufficient space at the two venues, it would be very helpful to them if people could register their intention to attend – https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/D6FBDGH
All the best for the week!
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