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Plastic Free Swindon – simple guide

We have put together this simple guide to reducing plastic. In this way, we can work together to overcome plastic pollution. For ideas on reducing the amount of plastic we buy, please check out our plastic-free blogs and Friends of the Earth’s plastic-free website. Taking part in challenges such as Plastic Free July or Waste Free February are good ways to learn together and get some support whilst doing so. Refill Swindon reduces plastic water bottles by providing places for people to refill their reusable bottles. It is part of the growing international Refill scheme. Asking cafes, restaurants and pubs to support the scheme is a simple way to make positive change. Please contact us if you would like to help grow the scheme or would like to sign up. Supporting zero waste, local, independent and organic has many benefits for the health of people, animals and the environment. Fortunately[…]

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The Time Is Now – collective lobbying event at Parliament

The climate crisis has become more prolific in the news recently aided by the Extinction Rebellion protests. These were followed by the publication of the UK Committee on Climate Change report – which proposed net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 – and the UN’s assessment of how quickly we are losing natural ecosystems on which we all depend. You can read more in these articles by the Committee on Climate Change and the UN. According to both sources, ‘transformative changes’ are urgently needed. Those changes are possible but we need everyone to play their part, including governments around the world. So here’s one thing we can all do: ask our MP to support the proposals of the Committee on Climate Change for a zero carbon UK. On 26th June some of us will be going to Westminster to meet our MPs. Do join us! You can register through the[…]

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Net zero by 2050 – template letter to send MPs

For South Swindon residents, MP is Robert Buckland.robert.buckland.mp@parliament.uk29 B Wood St, Old Town, Swindon, SN1 4AN.01793 533393. For North Swindon residents, MP is Justin Tomlinson.justin.tomlinson.mp@parliament.ukFirst Floor, Customer Service Hub, Orbital Shopping Park, Thamesdown Drive, Swindon, SN25 4AN.01793 533 393. Dear [Insert MP’s name], I am writing to express my support for the greenhouse gas emissions target proposed by the Committee on Climate Change, of net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050. This is based on the International Panel on Climate Change 2018 report. You can read more detail at the following link:https://www.theccc.org.uk/2019/05/02/phase-out-greenhouse-gas-emissions-by-2050-to-end-uk-contribution-to-global-warming/ The UK has achieved much since the Climate Change Act of 2008. However climate science is now showing that the carbon budgets set in 2008 are not ambitious enough. Indeed unless decisive action is taken now, it is likely that we will fail to meet commitments under the 2008 Act. So, I ask you as my local MP[…]

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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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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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Healthy Homes: DIY Energy & Money Saving Session

Organised by SCAN, this is an introductory session on the basics of DIY Energy & Home Money Saving led by local Energy Efficiency specialist Mike Neate of ECO-DC The session is on Sunday 27th January 2019 from 9.30 to 12:00 at Savernake Social Hall, Savernake Street, Swindon The demonstations and issues explained will include: How heat is lost Draft-proofing / air-tightness Condensation and ventilation Cold spots: cold bridging and insulation DIY opportunity to have a go A few spaces are still available, so if you would like to attend please confirm your interest via our contact page by Friday 18th January. In addition to this free “taster session”, we are intending to stage a follow up short course – probably 4 “hands on” sessions lasting 2.5 hours each later this year. Looking forward to seeing you on Sun. 27th.Gerry, Lucas and Anna, SCAN Steering Group

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My Plastic Free Blog – Helen

It initially seemed a not insurmountable problem- going plastic free for July. After all there were alternatives, weren’t there? I knew it would be much more difficult for the rest of my family as they are meat eaters whereas I’m not. I knew some things would be impossible; for instance, medication blister packs which are generally a combination of foil and plastic. Not much chance of getting those in bulk or loose. For everything else, surely it would be possible to avoid plastic for one month. The Changes I’ve Made So Far A trip to the usual supermarket was a bit of an eye opener when I counted only about 3 types of vegetables out of the 30 or so on offer that were not wrapped in plastic. Luckily an unsuspecting manager appeared and started checking some nearby items. So I challenged him on the requirement to wrap basic hard[…]

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My Plastic Free Blog – Anna

A few words about me I’m a bit of a womble (hate waste), and love nature! Never happier than when walking a coast path, breathing in the ocean, watching seals playing; or stomping around the Marlborough downs, around magical Avebury. Genuinely joyful at hearing birdsong, seeing bees and butterflies and picking raspberries straight from the bush. I have a deep respect for nature, and how very reliant we, as a species are on it, not just for our physical but also mental well-being. So taking the #PlasticFreeJuly challenge was a no-brainer, and having a group of colleagues at work who were willing to do the same definitely encouraged me to make a real effort. What did you do for Plastic Free July Tackled plastic around my food and in my toiletries for the most part. And had a lot of conversations about reducing single-use plastic and unnecessary packaging. Experienced some[…]

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My Plastic Free Blog – Ben

About Me I’m an organiser with SCAN and am coordinating the Plastic Free Swindon campaign. I have been an active campaigner for the last four years and am dedicated to making positive change. It has given my life much purpose. Besides campaigning, I love to sing and play guitar around Swindon. Spread the love, as a good friend always says. I make further considerations when buying products which have made the transition to being plastic-free more difficult. I buy almost entirely from independent, local shops as I recognise the many benefits of doing so. I only buy vegan produce so as not to cause suffering to animals. And I mostly buy local organic produce – good for the environment and local people / economy. Good for me. Changes Made So Far: I now keep my diet fairly simple by buying whole foods. It is cheaper and healthier than buying processed[…]

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My Plastic Free Blog – Lesley

About Me My name is Lesley. I am a 59 year old grandmother from Swindon. I can’t remember the exact moment I decided to start reducing plastics. It’s been bothering me more and more over the last year or two. I was shocked to learn about the plastic recycling myth and that so little plastic is actually able to be recycled. Before then I hadn’t considered the impact of the UK’s large scale shipping of plastic waste across the world and that it is not truly known what happens to it. Having your plastic picked up from the doorstep lulls you into a false sense of security. I blindly believed that plastic was properly recycled. How wrong I was! Our out of control use of plastic is totally mad. We are ruining our planet. During my lifetime we have gone from hardly anything wrapped in plastic to today where it[…]

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