On Tuesday the 15th of September, we had a very interesting talk from Adam Stark from The Food Resilience Project in Cootham. Adam teaches religion and philosophy at the Weald School, and is a self-published writer as well as an environmental campaigner, along a list of other accomplishments. The evening started with a movie trailer shown by Carrie Cort, called “The Need To Grow”, a stark environmental documentary film emphasising that “we need to stop playing games and start saving the planet” because to “not take care of our planet [is] no longer an option”. With that setting the stage for the importance and difficulty of maintaining our food systems in the face of the global and climatic changes we are seeing, we moved into hearing about Adam’s initiative. Read more
Our Horsham Climate Cafe on 5th September was an inspiring and informative talk about Wildlife Friendly Gardening. Every green space is critical for our wildlife, even your garden, as all our UK gardens form more space than all the UK nature reserves!
Carrie the founder of Sussex Green Living opened the event with a reminder that we humans are not at the top of a wildlife pyramid but are simply part of the web of all life. All the living things in an ecosystem depend on all the other things – living and non-living for continued survival – for food supplies and other needs. Humans, animals and plants depend on a complex system of food for survival. Stressing the importance of using bug hotels, bird boxes and bat boxes in our gardens, but be aware that bats need about 1,000 mosquito type insects per hour, so a pond is almost essential!
Joanne Knowles was our second speaker who is passionate about encouraging us all to seek out peat -free compost. Read more
Did the World announce there is a climate emergency? Yes by 26th August 2020 1,767 jurisdictions in 30 countries had declared a climate emergency. Populations covered by jurisdictions that have declared a climate emergency amount to over 820 million citizens, with 60 million of these living in the United Kingdom. This means in Britain now over 90 per cent of the population lives in areas that have declared a climate emergency, over 450 councils all together. So why are the councils in Surrey and Sussex still allowing licences for profit making companies to drill for fossil fuel? It is insane. Learn what is happening locally with an update from the Weald Action Group:
1. The Weald Action Group are doing a Weald Oil Walk in September aiming to raise money in view of the Judicial Review being led by Sarah Finch from Surrey following Surrey CC adopting a Climate Emergency and then permitting the drilling company UKOG to undertake production at their Horse Hill site (well a bit waterlogged currently). To learn more about the walk contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
2. Balcombe – application for Extended Well Test coming forward again to WSCC Planning Committee. It was due to be considered on March 24th but that meeting was held later and the Planning Officer Chris Bartlett recommended REFUSAL. Out for consultation until Sept 28th. Read more
How did it start?
Sarah Renfrey set up Fare Divide in 2018 with a vision to save perishable foodstuff from landfill by setting up community fridges in West Sussex to encourage healthier communities by forging partnerships with local food suppliers and make surplus food available to all without judgement or stigma.
What is Fare Divide?
The Keep Rookwood Green bio blitz on Saturday 15th August was an outstanding success which a stream of timed arrivals of families who went to record the wildlife. The council plan to build 1,100 new houses on Roowood Golf Course, which is located next to Horsham’s nature reserve, this area makes up 28% of Horsham’s large green space. This wildlife-rich natural world is vital for our wellbeing and survival, once built on it is lost and gone forever.
You can listen to the talk by Keep Rookwood Green and see their presentation here.
People are being encouraged to write to their councillors, sign the Keep Rookwood Green petition and carry out their own bio blitz on a day which suits you and any friends or family members. Use this map and log to plot your finds, take photos and share them in the social media with this hashtag #foundonrookwood. You can find Keep Rookwood Green social media details and the petition on this page. Read more
- Over the last 10 years the UK has made some good progress reducing the carbon emissions associated with the generation of electricity. However – over the same timeframe – very little progress has been in reducing the emissions associated with heating our homes (ie “space heating” the heating of our home spaces). This is mostly due to our reliance on gas boilers in the home.
- There are a number of options that can reduce the emissions related to space heating, not least improvements in home insulation (reducing wasted heat that “leaks” out of your home). But which insulation – wall, floor or roof ? And when you have optimised the insulation, which non-gas technology should you consider – solar, heat pumps (air source or ground source), or is there something new just around the corner ?
- Warmer Sussex offer impartial advice (via a Retrofit Coordinator) to give you a plan/road map to reducing the emissions related to the space heating of your home. You will receive a bespoke Whole House Plan which looks at what has been done before, and what can be improved now. The Retrofit Coordinator considers the property, the clients budget, and any future plans they have (eg updating kitchen) when developing the strategy for the property. The insulation and ventilation will be considered first before starting to tackle heating/renewable.
On Tuesday evening our Horsham Future Forum were inspired by a presentation about the new Guildford Community Hub which it is in the early stages of development. It consists of 12 different local organisations working together, their aim: education and engaging the wider population to drive behavioural change, and thereby try to reduce consumption emissions. Presented by Ben McCallan.
The Guildford Community Hub is built on a model called Space Generators, which has been operating for about 30 years. Space Generators focus on arts environmental community and sustainability projects / events using their network built up since 1992, when their campaign for the reuse of empty space began after the Rio Earth Summit. They tailor events or create a variety of modules to match vacant space in the interim period before development. Helping to provide space for local community use.
Currently there are Community Hubs being formed in Staines, Farnham, Elmbridge and two in Scotland. Could we develop a community hub in Horsham?
Join the Keep Rookwood Green Campaign on Saturday 15th August to become citizen scientists at this bio blitz, help carry out surveys to help record all living species in the area. You can book timed tickets for staggered visits through this Eventbrite link or learn more here www.KeepRookWoodGreen.org.
Watch the talk Keep Rookwood Green gave at our Horsham Future Forum meeting on Tuesday 16th June here.
There are 32 churches in Horsham Churches Together representing Christian denominations in Horsham and the surrounding villages. Horsham Churches Together looks to witness together, work together and influence together, and, in this way, desire to be an influence for good in the community. At present, church services continue to be live-streamed, some buildings are open for private prayer, and others for services. The church is more than the building and there are Christians everywhere making a difference at this time.
The A Rocha UK Eco Church Scheme has been adopted by a number of churches in Horsham Churches Together and we are delighted to have churches who have achieved the Bronze and Silver Awards, and are now going for the Gold Award. The actions and achievements impact on the churches and congregations, the wider communities they serve, and God’s planet. The slides from Karen’s presentation are attached and we would be very happy to answer any further questions – just email email@example.com. Read more
…to the online launch of E.Y.E.’s 1st Virtual EYE Eco-Summit, on the 2nd July at 10:00.
The social distancing has led to the postponement of the 13th Worthing and Adur Eco-Summit gathering. I know that your participation in the event was booked into your calendar, and that you might take an interest in our virtual event. As always we look forward to your involvement and support with our future events.
EYE have taken the initiative to collate and post a selection of workshops, to keep our keen eco-learners busy. Kindly provided by some of our supporters who were able to do so, in these challenging times we currently find ourselves in.
The 1st Virtual EYE Eco-Summit will be available via YouTube. Read more
Saturday 4th July the Horsham Climate Cafe session will be focusing on life celebrations, and how to make them more pocket and planet-friendly. Christenings, weddings, anniversaries and funerals needn’t cost the Earth (in more than one way!). Presented by Jeanie Francis, a Billingshurst-based OneSpirit Interfaith minister/celebrant and ‘silverpreneur’ who over the last 25 years she has developed a passion for creating personal, environmentally friendly special occasions that celebrate milestones in life.
Whether you are planning a celebration of new life or loosing a loved one, with a little thinking ‘out-side the box’ (excuse the pun) a personal and unique occasion, honouring a specific religion, mixed religion or no religion can be planned.
This is what one couple said recently about their son’s baby naming ceremony: “With a deep love of nature but with no particular religious faith we felt unsure how to celebrate the arrival of our son, Adam. With Jean’s imaginative guidance we created a beautiful ceremony which took place in our cottage garden beneath the willow tree. Everyone wrote wishes for Adam on cotton flags and tied them to the willow tree. Jean suggested we ask special friends to be guardians to Adam for Male Youth, Wisdom, Creativity and Spirituality. A day full of truly wonderful memories thank you Jean”. Read more
On Tuesday 16th June our weekly Horsham Future Forum and Youth Eco Forum attendees listened to an excellent talk by Peter Simpson, Trustee of the Friends of Warnham Local Nature Reserve and Sally Sanderson, Chair of Friends of Horsham Park. Friends of Warnham Local Nature Reserve, Friends of Horsham Park and the Horsham Society have formed Keep Rookwood Green Alliance and are campaigning to retain Rookwood Golf Course as a public green space.
Those of us on this week’s Zoom call were shocked to learn of the ecological damage and the 29% loss of Horsham’s large green space that will occur if 1,100 houses are built on Rookwood Golf Course. The decision will be finalised before August and there is a short window of opportunity in which we can influence Horsham District Councillors. The more of us that make our views known known, the greater the chance that we will be heard and that we can Keep Rookwood Green!
Here are some ways that you can get involved: Read more
Bigger and better: Appeal for help to expand our single use plastic recycling operation and deliver a greener Horsham!
After a quiet start to the lockdown on the single use plastic recycling front, we are delighted to say that things are starting to pick up again and we are receiving increasing donations of single use plastics waste resources at the Quaker Meeting House drop off point. This is brilliant news as we want to make sure we’re diverting as much single use plastic household waste away from landfill and incineration, and finding new purposes for these materials through our TerraCycle recycling scheme.
We are extremely lucky to have our small but dedicated team of volunteers (affectionately known as the Wombles!) who throughout the lockdown have continued to sort through the donations on a weekly basis in a socially distanced manner. However as waste resource donations return to pre lockdown levels, SGL is in desperate need of support to expand its recycling capability. To give some indication of the quantities the team are working through, a staggering 120,000 crisp packets have been recycled by our team over the course of the last two years! Once single plastic donations are dropped off at the Quaker Meeting House, these are sorted through by hand by our volunteers, boxed up and sent to a company called TerraCycle who manage the recycling of these hard to recycle materials. Without these volunteers, crisp packets along with lots of other household single use plastic resources such as biscuit and snack wrappers would be discarded in waste bins, which currently are transported to Germany and Holland to be incinerated at significant financial and environmental cost. Read more
On Tuesday 9th June the Sussex Green Living hosted weekly Horsham Future Forum and Youth Eco Forum listened to an excellent talk by Francis Vernon the chair of Horsham District Cycling forum. They are working hard to encourage Horsham District Council to install pop-up cycling lanes in Horsham town.
Message from Horsham District Cycling Forum
We’ve seen them going in across the country and now Horsham is finally getting its own pop-up cycle lanes along a section of Albion Way.
With the ongoing need to maintain social distancing as we ease out of lockdown, taking measures to enable active travel will be crucial in allowing people to get around safely. Read more
Last month the Government called on councils to make swift and significant changes to their road layouts to give more space to cyclists and pedestrians so as to enable socially distanced active travel.
West Sussex County Council has responded with seven schemes across the county, including the plan to cone off one lane of Horsham’s Albion Way in each direction from Sainsbury’s and Waitrose to the Bishopric to make it safer for people to cycle and walk to the supermarkets and the town.
For an example of what this could look like I attach a picture of a ‘pop-up’ cycle lane on Kingston Bridge over the Thames.
Although initially only along a short length of road, the Cycling Forum supports this plan since it will help local people walk and cycle more safely whilst maintaining social distancing – particularly along the busy stretch of road between the Bishopric and Waitrose where many people walk. This will be good for key workers getting to work, for children on their way to school (once they’re back!), and for people going to the shops. Read more
86% of the UK are consciously trying to be sustainable
A new report by Wren Kitchens has revealed the amount of energy used by kitchen appliances based on the average usage time and how much power they consume.
86% of the UK are now are consciously trying to be sustainable according to a new report by Wren Kitchens1.
Recycling, reusing, and repurposing have now become an everyday occurrence in the UK as households try and do ‘their bit’ for climate change and reduce their carbon footprint.
However, with energy use for household appliances tripling within the past 40 years2 just how much money and energy could we save by changing to a greener solution?
The new report has revealed that the kitchen is the most likely culprit for carbon and energy usage, due to the amount of appliances the room hosts whilst detailing tips on how to save energy and money. Read more
Holidays on hold? Or help at hand
On Saturday 6 June, Sussex Green Living’s virtual Horsham Climate Café meeting will be focusing on what post-pandemic travel might look like once the world opens up again.
Many questions about the future of travel and holidays remain to be answered. With movement restrictions still in place and many holidaymakers still not knowing if, how or when they can expect to get away, the biggest question may be:
How will people feel about holidays after the pandemic and have travellers’ priorities changed?
Some may be desperate to get away after the lockdown and others may be feel it is too risky for health reasons. The nature recovery may have inspired people to stay at home whilst others may be motivated by sustainable holidays or wanting to make a difference overseas.
This week’s Climate Café event will discuss Ethical Travel, StayCations and SlowCation (travel by bike and train) and suggest possible alternatives to our traditional get-aways. Read more
Inspiring environmental art competition appeals for children and young people to get involved over holidays and the summer term. Thanks to a grant from The Boltini Trust, Sussex Green Living and the South Downs National Park Trust, which is the official charity of South Downs National Park, have developed this “Clean Up & Create” a Bright New Future competition for 5-16 year olds in Sussex and Hampshire.
Julie Fawcett, Chair of the South Downs National Park Trust, said “A key focus for the South Downs National Park Trust is to engage young people with this amazing natural asset on their doorstep with all its beautiful landscapes and wildlife.
“This competition offers a great way for children to get creative and think about ways we can conserve and enhance our environment in the years ahead. Young people are the future custodians of national gems such as the South Downs and this is a fantastic way to inspire them”
The aim is to encourage young people to design some artwork with a powerful message to raise awareness of the environment and represent the theme of a bright new future they want for the world.
There are two categories to choose from in each age group: Read more
Last Saturday saw the eight virtual Horsham Climate Cafe since lockdown (our first was on 27th March). This last session focused on ways we can get more solar on schools, reducing their electricity costs, going green with their energy and helping provide energy education. Shannon from Solar for Schools explained how they can help, learn more about Solar for Schools, see Shannon’s presentation below or contact her on firstname.lastname@example.org or phone 07710483123
Here are a few other ways schools can green up:
- Schools may also be interested to know about the energy efficiency interest-free loans available to them https://www.salixfinance.co.uk/loans/schools-loans (this SEELS programme is funded by the Department for Education)
- A free energy efficiency programme will be running for schools that they might like to get involved with, consisting of four afternoon workshops http://www.lessco2.org.uk/. The existing cancelled programme will restart in October, other schools can still join it. Read more
Horsham Climate Cafe – the value of nature All of us are experiencing the uncertainty the current pandemic has brought with it, alongside the forced physical disconnect from one another […]
Sorry to say that the Horsham Repair Café will not be physically opening for our once a month repairs, refills and energy advice for a while. However we have reviewed the situation and are now going to trial a weekly repair service which will run alongside the household and personal hygiene bottle refill service. We can offer repairs to small electrical household and IT items only at the moment. This drop off and collection service will be offered each Saturday between 10-12 noon (with suitable covid social distancing and product handling restrictions).
Please book in your item by completing our online booking form here, we will then email to confirm the procedure and location for drop off. Please note that we are not able to repair any textiles for the foreseeable future.
Electrical repairs – our volunteer repairer will assess the item and inform you if there is a need to purchase any parts. If you agree to the costs on collection you will be asked to pay for the costs, a voluntary donation to the Horsham Repair Café is optional. Read more
Saturday 9th May the weekly virtual Horsham Climate Cafe focused on The Value of Nature, bringing attendees a special message from Nicola Peel who is locked down in a cloud forest in Los Cedros Biological Reserve in the Choco region of Ecuador full of yet to be discovered plant and animals. Plants which will provide cures to diseases, trees which give us oxygen to breath, things we take for granted. The debate is gold and copper mining for new phones or medicine and oxygen?
During this Climate Cafe session Victoria Wyllie de Echeverria also gave an informal talk about the deep connection indigenous people have to nature, their stewardship of the land and water and how they are adapting to climate change.
You can see Nicola’s video message at the bottom of this page. Learn here about Nicola’s lockdown location, one of the most biologically diverse and endemic habitats on Earth in her latest email:
After finishing my work in the Ecuadorian Amazon I was about to have a week to myself on the coast. This was not to be. Like so many of us due to the unforeseen events our lives have changed.
I had returned to Quito and was staying with a friend when I heard that due to Corona Virus all borders were closed, flights to be cancelled and no more buses. I got out of the city on the last bus to Chontal and headed up to the Los Cedros Reserve. http://reservaloscedros.org/
- Parishes and Schools recycle more single-use plastics September 25, 2020
- Food and community resilience September 21, 2020
- Learn from our Youth Eco Forum September 15, 2020