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Plastic Free Swindon – Aims

Plastic Free Swindon is a campaign to eliminate plastic pollution. It is designed to help facilitate change by engaging with the people, organisations, institutions and representatives of Swindon. We seek to understand barriers to change in order to implement solutions. When we set up the campaign, we drew up a plan of engagement and have been working on different aspects of that. Swindon Climate Action Network are the affiliated Friends of the Earth group in Swindon, which means we are one of the organisations that form the global Break Free From Plastic movement. Plastic Free Swindon is one of many plastic-free town and city campaigns across the UK. And efforts to reduce plastic pollution are happening in groups like ours in countries all over the world. Together we can end plastic pollution. By working together, through simple local actions, we can affect the necessary changes. We desperately need legislation to[…]

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Nude Foods in The Core, and next steps for Swindon Zero Waste Initiative.

The following was released by the Swindon Zero Waste Initiaitve on the 28th May 2019: ‘Our zero-waste shop, Nude Foods, has now been open for 6 weeks. Thanks to all who have come to shop and support us so far. If you haven’t tried us yet, please do. We hope to see you soon! In realising our project, we owe a huge debt of gratitude to Kris Talikowski, the owner of The Core. Allowing us a free space in his Juice Bar has meant the difference between reality and just a dream! If you visit our shop, please do consider partaking of some of the wonderful healthy juices and snacks available at The Core. Well worth a try and a nice way to show our thanks for the support! Also, a huge thank you and appreciation to all our fantastic volunteers. We wouldn’t be here without you. Please do keep[…]

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Write to your MP – plastic legislation

Friends of the Earth have produced a Plastic Pollution Bill to phase out plastics. It forms effective legislation to ensure the phasing out of plastic pollution, ensuring three commitments: Now: Begin phasing out unneeded plastics, making exceptions for essential uses such as in medicine and those vital to the quality of life of disabled people. ASAP: End pollution from hard-to-replace plastics (like from car tyres, clothing etc). Aim for near zero plastic pollution by 2042. The first action to take is to sign Friends of the Earth’s petition and use their template letter to write to the Environment Secretary, Michael Gove, asking him to support the Plastic Pollution Bill. The second action is to write to your local MP. We have a template letter that you can cut and paste. If you’re not sure who the MP for your area is, please use this search tool. For South Swindon residents,[…]

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Ecobricks Tips

Here’s a few tips that we hope that you will find useful: Watch the videos on the ecobricks website. Don’t forget – only use clean, dry, non-biodegradeable plastic. Start with small bottles if you have them, they are easier to get right. Start with the lightweight easily crushable plastic, I also find scrunching it up a few times first makes it easier to compact in. Cut the more rigid plastic up and put it in in small layers. Weigh your bottle frequently to ensure you are getting the right density from the start. If you are filling a bit at a time, make sure you compact the partly filled bottles again before you start adding more plastic, if the bottles have been left for a while the plastic starts to expand.

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CHEESE at Penhill – Warm Homes project at the Community Cafe

Tuesday 26th February, 1-3pm at John Moulton Hall, Penhill Drive, Swindon SN2 5DU. The Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE) was at the Penhill community cafe to share the results of the CHEESE thermal image surveys taken from inside a couple of Penhill properties. The findings were discussed as well as ways to reduce fuel bills / conserve energy. Discussion was had as well about how to facilitate that for the local community. Draught-proofing is the most important and cost effective way to save energy in most houses – cold air leaking in through small cracks can replace the warm air in a room or house quite quickly. But finding where the cold air is coming in can be challenging. There is a lot more that can be done. Spreading information is a big part of the process of change. CHEESE (Cold Homes Energy Efficiency Survey Experts) was started by someone I[…]

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Personal Actions In Context

This chart is a useful illustration to give a quantitative idea of the relative benefits of different personal life choices. Not everything is on there, and of course the relative importance of medium impact actions in an individual case depends on how much travel, energy and food consumed. However for an average household, most of the things that have the biggest effect on climate change and the attendant environmental degradation are represented. It is based on research at Lund University: for more detail see here: https://phys.org/news/2017-07-effective-individual-tackle-climate-discussed.html The main thing missing I think for a typical UK household is halving heat wasted in the home: but the ‘buying green energy’ bar gives an idea of the relative importance. It’s also important to note that ‘buying green energy’ means buying it from a supplier who only invests in green energy, not just using a ‘green tariff’ – see their full report for[…]

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Pinehurst Litter Pick – Feb 2019

1:30 – 4pm, Sunday 17th February 2019. SCAN and RSPCA North Wilts were in Pinehurst again for the second litter pick there this year in what is to be a regular event, roughly each month. We cleaned again around some of the estates and woodland areas. At the end of the litter pick, we sort through the rubbish to recycle what we can. It’s a nice way to spend a Sunday, very rewarding. RSPCA North Wiltshire wrote this article for us about their work and the importance of reducing litter for the well-being of animals.  Further information can be found on their website and Facebook page. This event is part of the Plastic Free Swindon campaign.

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Swindon Council Climate Change Motion – Thursday 24 January 2019

Come to Council to watch our local government debate Swindon’s first Climate Change Motion. On Thursday 24 January 7pm, a motion is being debated by Swindon council at it’s full council meeting. If you feel this is important, it would be very worthwhile to discuss it with your councillors and come to the meeting to observe the debate from the gallery. The details of the meeting and the currently proposed motion are here: https://ww5.swindon.gov.uk/moderngov/ieListDocuments.aspx?CId=284&MId=9503&Ver=4 Many councils around the world and in the UK are starting to realise the urgency of action to mitigate climate change and the attendant environmental destruction. Bristol for example has recently passed a ‘zero carbon 2030’ motion, and London has followed suit: https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2018/nov/14/bristol-plans-to-become-carbon-neutral-by-2030 https://www.london.gov.uk/press-releases/assembly/call-on-mayor-to-declare-climate-emergency# Swindon could be in the vanguard of the transition to a zero-carbon economy, delivering economic benefits to Swindon in terms of new jobs and market opportunities. The motion as currently proposed by[…]

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