Kevin Anderson talk told of the urgency of taking action and that very little had been done so far. This is what the Green Party should be shouting about from the roof tops, but instead the stay quite because they are afraid of scaring the voters. One of the things the author of the article left out, was the fact that it is the affluent who need to be making the sacrifices and not the poor.

manchester climate monthly

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Climate scientist Kevin Anderson talks to Manchester’s full council about turning climate rhetoric into reality, steady state and why it’s too late in the day to be pinning our hopes on technologies 

Weds Jan 30: Kevin Anderson, professor of energy and climate change at Manchester University, was invited to give a 30 minute presentation to Manchester’s full council meeting today. The great hall was packed out with 90+ councillors and over 35 members of the public. Here’s what happened next…

screenshotmcc1As usual, Professor Kevin Anderson delivered a no-nonsense presentation about what the science is telling us about climate change – that it’s coming faster and harder than even scientists thought – and what we are doing to stop it (very little basically). In fact, we are producing more carbon every year. Anderson kicked off by saying that whilst a 2 degree rise in global temperature was seen as acceptable twenty…

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Manchester City Council (Labour run) does not care about the residents, the environment, or biodiversity. They think, changing the landscape of Manchester, whilst benefiting their business partners will somehow propel them to the same status as Whitworth, Joules, Turin, Pugin and many other famous Victorians.

Save Alexandra Parks Trees

Unfortunately 2 hedgehogs were found dead in the park yesterday by dog walkers near the depot.
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There are a lot of vehicles going in and out the depot, and with all the works going on hedgehogs are likely to be disturbed out of hibernation. As we have just been reminded by the recent PTES report, hedgehogs are in serious decline in the UK and of course they are a GM Biodiversity Action Plan species. We have them in the park and instead of protecting them, their habitats are being destroyed and their lives endangered under these renovation plans.

The council has legal duties under Wild Mammals (Protection) Act 1996 and NERC Act 2006. We’re not suggesting at this stage that these recent deaths are the result of acts of intentional cruelty but the contractors are displaying a distinct lack of care, both in their actions on the ground and in their…

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The UK’s Government response, delay, delay then fudge it.

Woodland Matters

So, just over a week to go before the government publishes its response to the Independent Panel’s report on forestry. Seasoned forest watchers are awaiting the response with a mixture of eagerness and mild trepidation.

The timeline on all of this is fascinating – the response comes almost exactly two years to the day after the Government launched its consultation on the future of the public forest estate in January 2011. When public outcry forced it to abandon proposals to sell off most if not all of the estate in February 2011, it launched in the Independent Panel on Forestry in March 2011, both to take the heat out of a tricky political situation and to obtain some high quality insight into not just the future of public forests but also the question of the direction for forestry in England in future.

After 15 months the report was published in…

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Democratic Manchester City Council!

Manchester City Council continue to show, that they are overwhelmingly not acting in the residents best interests, once again ignoring it’s electorate. It has almost total control of the council and acts as a dictatorship. This is to ensure that Bernstein and Leese build their ivory towers, ensuring the City of Manchester, is all fur-coat and no knickers:  Mersey Valley warden service facing the axe.

manchester climate monthly

Two must-read articles about Alexandra Park, where the chainsaws are moving in… (See our previous editorial on the subject here).

From the Hulme Green Party, “Alex Park protesters take to trees to stop “Felling Vandalism”

Manchester Green Party Chair Deyika Nzeribe commented “The campaign group has done everything right. They got over 2000 signatures asking for the plans to be reconsidered, they got local experts to show how the councils plans to be altered to preserve trees and they have been in dialogue with both the Council and funders the Lottery every step of the way. They have been completely ignored.

To draw a parallel, last week Manchester City Council made a great show of how unfair the cuts to local budgets were and how the government were ignoring them. The council are acting in exactly the same way as the government to this local issue.”

From Nadine…

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For a bit of light-entertainment (it is not really funny) here is someone’s interpretation of Cameron’s nonsense rantings, worse Blair’s (the war-criminal) ever was. It is funny how the right and left in this country both vilify the EU, even if it were not for the EU, we would have USA labour relations and certainty no environmental protection.

The SKWAWKBOX

TV’s news comedy show, Mock the Week, has a semi-regular and very funny segment involving Hugh Dennis and one of the other panelists. In this segment, the other panelist will read lines from a senior political figure while Hugh Dennis delivers his interpretation of what the politician really means.

I had the same feeling this morning as I watched David Cameron’s much-trailed speech on the EU. BBC News showed the speech in full, and afterward commentators made much of the obvious and very unsurprising points of the speech, namely that the speech was Cameron’s (rather desperate) attempt to defuse the threat from UKIP and his own backbenchers and to persuade europhobic voters to support him in the next general election by dangling the promise of an ‘in/out’ referendum in 2017.

Some also highlighted the obvious fact that by cravenly giving a 2017 date for the referendum, he was condemning…

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Independent Science News | Food, Health and Agriculture Bioscience News » Regulators Discover a Hidden Viral Gene in Commercial GMO Crops » Print

Recent research on Genetically Modified (GMOs) crops, highlighting another issue with their widespread use.  Our regulators have allowed themselves to be convinced by the big corporations, and not taken rigorous independent testing of these crops before allowing their use.

Independent Science News | Food, Health and Agriculture Bioscience News » Regulators Discover a Hidden Viral Gene in Commercial GMO Crops » Print.

Mehadrin: New evidence of mislabelled settlement produce | Corporate Watch

I wrote to a number of our North West MEPs about EU’s trade with Israel, and received in reply, what I consider patronising nonsense.  That the only thing that matters is the economic benefits of trading with Israel and not the continuing criminal acts of  the illegal Sate of Israel.  As the article below, points out, the Israelis are still mislabelling produce, so they can sell it in the EU

Mehadrin: New evidence of mislabelled settlement produce | Corporate Watch.

Here is the response from Robert Sturdy MEP Conservative Spokesman,Vice-Chairman, International Trade Committee:

Thank you for your email regarding this subject. I have received a number of emails relating to this issue and have passed them onto my colleague Robert Sturdy who is the Vice-Chairman of the International Trade Committee and Conservative Spokesman on the same subject, therefore he has a better understanding of these issues, his response is outlined below.

Yours sincerely,

Jacqueline Foster MEP

MEP for North West England

Conservative Spokesman for Transport and Tourism

Response of Robert Sturdy MEP

Thank you for contacting me about the Protocol to the Euro-Mediterranean Agreement establishing an association between the European Communities and their Member States, of the one part, and the State of Israel, of the other part, on Conformity Assessment and Acceptance of Industrial Products (CAA).

The EU-Israel CAA, until recently known as ACAA, is a technical framework agreement which aims at facilitating the elimination of technical barriers to trade in respect of certain industrial products, through the mutual recognition and harmonisation of technical standards.  The CAA could be hugely beneficial to the EU as it could significantly reduce costs of imported pharmaceutical products into the EU and save time-to-market conditions (saving 1-3 years for every market product) for imported medicinal products both from Israel and the EU.

Although primarily an economic agreement, I think that it has the potential of not only bringing benefits to European consumers and importers of pharmaceutical products but also of helping to foster stability in the region by facilitating further harmonisation between EU and Israeli Law in the relevant areas. 

From the perspectives of the Conservative members of the International Trade Committee (INTA), we believe that this particular agreement to be purely technical issue that should be judged on its trade merits alone. Furthermore it is simply a protocol to an already existing agreement between the EU and Israel. 

However, this is not to say that the wider issues surrounding the Agreement are not valid. The Conservatives in the European are acutely aware of the ongoing situation in the Middle East and are supportive of peace efforts based on the Oslo Peace accords, the road map for peace and the quartet with a viable two state solution based roughly upon the 1967 borders, with land for peace exchanges taking place. Both sides need to realise their commitments to Human Rights and International Law. The EU can play a major role in bringing peace to the Middle East but it must be seen as fair and impartial. A similar agreement with the Palestinian Authority was agreed a number of months ago and I believe it would be hypocritical of the EU if it rejects this agreement.

Having said this, the Parliament’s Foreign Affairs Committee (AFET), which has the experience and expertise to give this issue the attention it deserves, has provided an Opinion on the ramifications vis-à-vis the situation in the Middle East which was passed on to all INTA members. Both the AFET and INTA Committees decided to submit a question to the Commission in a bid to address some of their concerns with regards to this agreement. The Commission has offered concrete assurances that the agreement is in conformity with EU legal commitments. 

With regards, to the production of goods in the Occupied Territories, the EU has been clear it will not accept products originating from the Israeli Occupied Territories. This is prohibited under Community law which means that products coming from places (city, village or industrial zone) brought under Israeli Administration since 1967 are not entitled to benefit from preferential tariff treatment under the EU-Israel Association Agreement. This issue has been addressed in the INTA Committee in order to make sure that the CAA is in compliance with existing legislation.

The European Parliament voted in favour of the consent procedure concerning the additional protocol on conformity assessment on the 18th October 2012, with 379 votes in favour. 

We will continue to correspond with civil society from both sides of the dispute and we will continue to monitor developments. Rest assured that the wider political situation, alongside the economic benefits, will not be ignored by the INTA Committee or by the Parliament at large.

Yours sincerely,

Robert Sturdy MEP

MEP for East of England

Vice-Chairman of the International Trade committee

 

stickman’s corral: Review – Extreme Environment (Ivo Vegter)

Though I disagree with some of the points the reviewer makes during his review of Extreme Environment.  I think, he has highlighted the repeated nonsense of those who think ‘business-as-usual’ scenario is the one we should follow and environmentalist are just a bunch of ‘Nazis’.  The fact that Ivo Vegter uses Monckton as a source of knowledge to attack environmentalist, should give a clue to the his mindset.  There are points environmentalist can learn both from the book and the reviewer’s blog, for them to develop their case more hard-cast and understandable to all.

stickman’s corral: Review – Extreme Environment (Ivo Vegter).

Frontline Online: Where should we be looking for waste we can turn to energy? – The Ecologist

Another article which follows on from an earlier reblog I posted on the 12th January:Video: The Dark Side of the Green Economy
Inappropriate biofuel and biomass development can exasperate the pollution, poverty and starvation we already suffer from.  I cringe, every time I hear of a ‘ecohouse’ which has wood burners install as a ‘green’ answer to their space heating.  It is not, especially on our already overcrowded and polluted Island.  The CAT (Centre of Alternative Technology) has a lot to answer for, they have not really moved on since the 70s with regards to alternative technologies.  Wood used to be the main source of energy on these Islands, but it was becoming scarce by the 1700s and the Islands nearly deforested.  This changed with the onset of steam technology which allowed the exploitation of the ancient fossil fuel beneath our feet.  As the Ecologist article mentions, using waste organic waste is a way forward.  I have been pushing AD biogesters to turn organic waste to energy (Methane) which is happening all over the world.  But is still in its infancy in the UK, just as wave and tidal technologies are.  We should be looking at the Best Available Technology (BAT), instead of relying on 18th Century technologies which may be cheaper to build.

Frontline Online: Where should we be looking for waste we can turn to energy? – The Ecologist.